Southern Poly athletic director Matt Griffin announced Wednesday the university will unveil its own athletics hall of fame in multiple ceremonies over the next year.
The addition of the hall comes less than two months after it was confirmed the four varsity athletic teams at the Marietta school would discontinue at the conclusion of the 2013-14 academic year in the wake of consolidation with Kennesaw State University.
Despite pressures from the merger, Griffin insists the hall of fame has been in the works since he began his tenure.
“Ever since I took over, it’s always been one of my goals to start one,” said Griffin, who took over as athletic director in July of 2012 after spending nine seasons as the Hornets’ baseball coach. “Obviously with consolidation coming we want to get this done sooner rather than later.
“We have such a rich tradition and it’s great to showcase the talent of individual athletes, coaches and administrators who were involved with the program through the years.”
Nominations are open to everyone. Submissions will be evaluated at a later date by a Hall of Fame Committee, which Griffin will appoint.
“Because this is a first time thing, we’re talking nearly six decades,” he said. “We want to open this up to anyone who’s been a contributor or part of the program. We want to make sure we get the best of the best.”
Candidates fall into five categories — student-athlete for athletic achievement, student-athlete for professional achievement, coach or administrator, an individual with distinguished service to Southern Poly athletics, and athletic teams.
Once the committee picks from the nomination pool, staggered unveiling of the selections will commence, with student-athletes named Sept. 1, coaches and administrators Sept. 22 and distinguished services and team achievements Oct. 13 of this year.
Griffin said that a physical location for the hall of fame is still in the works, but he hopes digital technology will make the attraction accessible from multiple locations.
“We’ve been looking at some new digital technology so we can have some touchscreens,” Griffin said. “But we’re considering the south campus to showcase the individuals.”
The official hall of fame induction ceremony is scheduled to take place on the Southern Poly campus March 27, 2015. Inductees will also be honored the next day during halftime of KSU’s first spring football game.
Southern Poly’s four athletic teams — baseball, men’s soccer and men’s and women’s basketball — have competed at the National Intercollegiate Athletic Association level and owns multiple Southern States Athletic Conference titles. Current student athletes will have the option to try out for KSU’s varsity teams or join club teams after consolidation.
For more information on how and where to submit nominations, visit spsuhornets.com