Pope to celebrate its past standouts
by Adam Carrington
September 04, 2013 11:20 PM | 2488 views | 0 0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Former football standout Tab Griffin and soccer star KeLeigh Hudson are the newest inductees into the Pope High School’s athletic hall of fame.

Both athletes will be honored Friday night at the Pope Multi-Sport Complex, on the same field where Griffin went down in history as the first Pope player to have scored a touchdown in the school’s current stadium.

The two inductees also have the distinction of playing more than one sport at Pope and excelling at both.

Griffin, who now coaches girls basketball and golf at Mount Paran Christian, while also serving as offensive coordinator of the school’s football team, was a three-year starting wide receiver for Pope before graduating in 1995.

He currently holds the school’s record for most touchdowns in a game (four) and in one quarter (four). He was named to the Marietta Daily Journal all-county team his junior and senior seasons and went on to play receiver at Chattanooga.

As a basketball player, he was selected as the Greyhounds’ best defensive player his senior year, and he was a member of a region championship team in 1993.

Griffin was also named sprinter of the year on the track team.

Griffin returned to Pope in 2001 and coached football, basketball, track and golf for eight years before leaving for Mount Paran.

“He was one of those rare athletes who was really good in all three sports,” said longtime Pope boys basketball coach Pat Abney, who coached Griffin his senior year. “You only come across those kids every once in a while.

“He was also a tremendous coach. He had a tremendous career for us.”

Hudson led Pope’s girls soccer team to back-to-back state titles in 2001 and ’02 and the state semifinals in 2003. She was named the Marietta Daily Journal/Cobb County Girls Soccer Player of the Year in 2004 after a season in which she finished with 28 goals and 30 assists.

After graduating from Pope in 2004, she went on to have a stellar career at Florida, where she was named to the All-Southeastern Conference team and named team MVP in 2007. She also led the Gators to two regular-season championships and two SEC tournament titles.

Hudson is now on Florida’s coaching staff as the director of soccer operations.

Hudson was also the point guard for Pope’s basketball team when it reached the state quarterfinals in 2001.
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