A product of Hillcrest High in Dalzell, Allen played 18 seasons in the NBA. After playing three seasons at the University of Connecticut, Allen entered the NBA in 1996 and played for the Milwaukee Bucks, Seattle SuperSonics, Boston Celtics and Miami Heat. One of the most accurate three-point and free throw shooters in NBA history, he was a 10-time All-Star, and won two championships (2008 and 2013) with the Celtics and Heat, respectively. He also won an Olympic gold medal as a member of the 2000 U.S. Basketball Team. At retirement, Allen was the NBA’s all-time leader in career three-point field goals made in the regular and postseason. While at UConn, he was a two-time All-American and the Big East Conference Player of the Year in 1995-96. A two-time First-Team All-Conference selection, Allen was USA Basketball’s Athlete of the Year in 1995. In three years at UConn, he scored 1,922 points, No. 5 on the all-time list. During Allen’s three years at UConn, the Huskies had an overall record of 89-13, a Big East Conference record of 49-5, with three Big East regular-season championships and a Big East Tournament Championship, three NCAA appearances that resulted in two appearances in the Sweet 16, and one to the Elite Eight. He has acted in two films.
From 1912-15, the Prosperity native and three-sport star at Newberry College made All-State twice in football and three times each in basketball and baseball.
A four-year starter for Clemson from 1994-98, Buckner ranked fourth on the Tigers’ all-time career scoring list with 1,754 points, averaging 14.4 points per game. He recorded 97 double-figure scoring games during his career, which tied for first in school history. Starting 122 consecutive games, he participated in the 1997 Olympic Trials, the 1998 NABC All-Star Game and the 1997 World University Games. A three-time Clemson team MVP (1996, 1997 and 1998), Buckner earned 1997 and 1998 All-ACC Second Team honors, 1996 First-Team All-ACC Tournament recognition, 1997 NABC All-District First-Team honors and NABC All-District Second Team recognition in 1998. Buckner played professionally for the Dallas Mavericks from 1999-02 and again in 2006-07, the Philadelphia 76ers from 2002-04, the Denver Nuggets from 2004-06, the Minnesota Timberwolves in 2007-08 and the Memphis Grizzlies in 2008-09.
An all-sports star from Winnsboro’s Mount Zion High, Collins became a standout basketball performer at USC (1961-64) and led the Gamecocks in scoring (23.8 points per game in 1964) and rebounding (8.4 per game in 1962). He was honored with All-ACC recognition in 1964 and was named to the 1962 All-ACC Tournament team.
The Columbia product starred at A.C. Flora High, and helped the Falcons win the state championship in 1981 before becoming a standout at DePaul University. He then embarked on a long NBA career (1985-2001) as a versatile, all-around performer. The 6-foot-6 forward/guard averaged 18 points a game in 1991 and finished his career with averages of 9.3 points, 4.8 rebounds and 1.8 assists. Since retiring, he has remained in the NBA as an assistant coach.
One of Coach Frank McGuire’s more popular players, Cremins, who came from the Bronx, N.Y., was a scrappy and beloved USC player (1968-70) who captained the Gamecocks in 1970. He was a successful coach at Appalachian State (1975-81), Georgia Tech (1981-2000) and College of Charleston (2006-12), compiling an overall record of 579-375. In the process, his teams captured three ACC Tournament titles, two regular-season crowns, one Southern Conference Tournament title and four regular-season championships. Named the 1990 Naismith Award winner (College Coach of the Year), Cremins was named Coach of the Year in the ACC three times and four times in the Southern Conference.
A 6-foot-11 big man who played basketball from 1987-91, Davis is one of the best basketball players ever to play at Clemson. While there, he was an honorable mention All-American and the first ACC player to lead the conference in both rebounding and field goal percentage in consecutive years. He is one of just three players in conference history to accumulate 1,500 points, 1,200 rebounds, and 200 blocked shots in a career. He was named an All-ACC player three times and helped lead the Tigers to an ACC championship in 1990, the first title in program history. Davis was drafted by the Indiana Pacers in the first round of the 1991 NBA Draft (13th overall). In 2000, he was selected to participate in the All-Star game. He played in the Final Four of the NBA Finals four times and was ranked 22nd in NBA history in career field goal percentage. He also played for Portland, Golden State, New Orleans and Detroit.
Clemson’s two-time All-American from Rome, Ga., and three-time All-ACC performer finished her college career as the third-highest all-time NCAA basketball scorer. A member of the 1979 All-ACC Rookie Team and the ACC’s 50th Anniversary Team, Dixon played for the U.S. National Team in 1982.
The only basketball player in NCAA history to be named its Conference Player of the Year four times, Dunkin played for Coastal Carolina University from 1989-90 and 1992-93. A native of Rains, he was inducted into the inaugural Big South Hall of Fame Class of 2003. An Associated Press honorable mention All-America in 1993, Dunkin was a four-time Big South first team All-Conference performer and 1990 Big South Rookie of the Year. He was named the Big South Tournament MVP twice in leading the Chanticleers to titles in 1991 and 1993, as well as two NCAA Tournaments berths (1991 and 1993), and was part of the team that defeated Jackson State in a “play-in” game to become the first Big South team ever to advance in the NCAA Basketball Tournament. He finished his career as CCU’s all-time leading scorer (2,151 points), and also set the Big South Conference career scoring record and led the Chanticleers to an 81-43 record during his career.
The scrappy, 6-foot-2 all-purpose guard and a four-year starter, finished his USC career (1972-76) as the school’s third-leading scorer with 1,586 points. The native New Yorker enjoyed an 11-year NBA career, compiling per-game averages of 8 points and 3.9 assists. Later, as an NBA head coach, Dunleavy led the Los Angeles Lakers to the league finals in 1992, and earned NBA Coach of the Year honors with the Portland Trail Blazers in 1999 before moving to the Los Angeles Clippers.
The first basketball player to start every game of his USC career (111), English scored 1,972 points as a Gamecock (1973-76) before heading to a hall of fame career in the NBA. The Columbia native and Dreher High graduate retired with an NBA record of scoring 2,000 or more points in eight straight seasons, he led the league in scoring in 1983 at 28.4 points per game, and scored more points in the 1980s than any other NBA player. He played for the Milwaukee Bucks, Indiana Pacers, Denver Nuggets and Dallas Mavericks.
Furman University’s first two-time, first-team basketball All-American and two-time Southern Conference Athlete of the Year, Floyd led the nation in scoring in 1955 by averaging 33.8 points a game, and repeated the feat in 1956 with a 35.9 average. The Thomasville, N.C., star scored 67 points against Morehouse in 1955.
USC’s two-time All-America post player from Boiling Springs held records for most career points (2,266), games played (134) and rebounds (1,427) from 1979-82, for 36 years. The Gamecocks compiled a 93-41 record, including 43-8 at home during her tenure. USC also finished third in the AIAW Final Four in 1980. Her USC jersey has been retired. Foster played professionally in Italy.
This late-bloomer from Sandy Springs, Ga., came of age as a USC senior during the 1964-65 season when he led the Gamecocks in scoring (13.6) and rebounding (13.6, second in the ACC) and dominated Clemson with a 30-point and 23-rebound performances. The 6-foot-10 center enjoyed a 10-year NBA career (9.3 points and 7.4 rebounds career averages) which included a memorable 25-point, 30-rebound game with the Seattle SuperSonics.
Fredrick spent his professional career playing in Italy from 1981-87 after graduating from USC in 1981. He is best known for leading NCAA Division I in scoring as a senior in 1980–81 with a 28.9 average. He played for coaches Frank McGuire and Bill Foster. The 781 points he scored during his senior season is second all-time in school history to Grady Wallace’s 906, which also led the nation in scoring in 1956–57. After being selected by the Los Angeles Lakers in the 1981 NBA Draft (third round, 51st overall), Fredrick enjoyed a decade-long European professional career, then returned to South Carolina and coached high school basketball at Calhoun County High in St. Matthews. During a seven-year stretch, Fredrick led CCHS to five state championships and a winning streak of 81 games.
Clemson’s 6-foot-10 star won the 1987 ACC Player of the Year Award when he led the conference in scoring (21.0), rebounding (9.6) and shooting percentage (.656). The second-team All-American from Sparta, Ga., became an NBA power forward, helping Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls win three championships (1991-93) and in 2001 with the Los Angeles Lakers. He was named to the 1994 NBA All-Star team and made second-team All-NBA Defensive team four times. The 1987 first round draft pick of the Bulls also played for the Orlando Magic and Seattle SuperSonics.
At 6-foot-7, the burly power forward from Charleston, W.Va., Gregor led the ACC in rebounding in 1967 and 1968 and made All-ACC both years. He was the eighth pick overall by Phoenix in 1968 and played two seasons for the Suns, and later played for the Atlanta Hawks, Portland Trail Blazers, Milwaukee Bucks and New York Nets. He was named to the NBA’s All-Rookie first-team in 1969.
A cornerstone to the success of the Coach Frank McGuire Era at USC along with backcourt mate Jack Thompson, Harlicka led USC in scoring during all three of his varsity seasons (1965-68), resulting in a 17.5 career average, including 21.8 as a senior, earning him All-ACC and Chuck Taylor Converse All-America honors. The Trenton, N.J., native ranked seventh among Gamecocks in per-year career scoring average with 1,209 points. He made the ACC All-Tournament team twice and played a key role in Carolina’s rise to the top of the league. He later played for the NBA Atlanta Hawks.
MARTHA PARKER HESTER
Hailing from Columbia’s Hammond Academy, Parker took home countless awards and posted impressive statistics during her four seasons as a member of the USC basketball team (1985-89). She averaged 13.9 points and 5.9 rebounds a game and ranks on the all-time USC scoring list with 1,728 career points. She earned All-America honors from the American Women’s Sports Federation in 1986-87 and was a Women’s Basketball News Service All-America honoree in 1987-88 and 1988-89. Parker is second on South Carolina’s all-time steals list (284) as she started all but two games during her USC career (122 starts in 124 games). Parker was a member of the GTE Academic All-America Team in her last two years and was honored with a post-graduate scholarship in 1989. During the 1999-2000 season, the SEC honored Dr. Martha Parker-Hester as USC’s Female Entrepreneur of the Year at the 2000 SEC Tournament. A graduate of the USC Medical School, Parker has a private family practice in Columbia with her husband.
EVELYN "ECKIE" JORDAN
A diminutive guard, Jordan led her undefeated Pelzer High team in 1942 and dominated the women’s amateur basketball league in North Carolina, leading the Hanes Hosiery team of the Southern Textile league to 102 consecutive victories (the streak included three National AAU Championships (1951, 1952 & 1953). She received the Teague Award in 1953 as the Carolinas’ most outstanding athlete. The five-time AAU All-American starred for the U.S. Gold Medal team at the 1955 Pan-Am Games, and she also shined in softball and tennis in the Winston-Salem area. Jordan has been inducted into the National AAU Basketball Hall of Fame, the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame and the North Carolina Softball Hall of Fame. Her jersey rotates with those of George Mikan and Bob Cousy in the Smithsonian Museum.
Joyce averaged 17.3 points a game for the Gamecocks over his three-year college career (1971-73), and helped lead USC to a 69-18 record during the period. In the summer of 1972, the Bayside, N.Y., product was a member of the U.S. Olympic team that played Russia in the controversial finals in Munich. After college, in which he was a 1973 consensus second-team All-American, Joyce played in the American Basketball Association for the Indiana Pacers, San Diego Sails and Kentucky Colonels (1973-76).
Named first-team All-ACC for Clemson in 1967, Mahaffey became an ABA All-Star in 1968. The LaGrange, Ga., native averaged 12 points a game for his 321-game professional career, which spanned from 1967-71 and included stints with the Kentucky Colonels, New York Nets and Carolina Cougars.
A native of Dillon, Manning graduated from Dillon High, USC in 1973 and earned his law degree from USC in 1977. Arriving in 1969 as the first scholarship African-American to play basketball at USC, Manning was the state’s high school player of the year in his senior season and led Dillon to the state AAA championship with a victory over Byrnes High. Manning played for legendary coach Frank McGuire on three NCAA tournament teams with the likes of USC legends John Roche, Tom Owens and Alex English. He was a member of the 1971 ACC Tournament championship team and received the Freshman Academic Award and the outstanding senior award. He is a former president of the South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame and is currently a circuit court judge and a long-time member of the USC Basketball radio broadcast team.
The 6-foot-8 bruiser from Furman University dominated the Southern Conference while averaging 17.9 points and 12.6 rebounds and shooting 53.2 percent of his field goals. During his three-year career (1973-75), he made All-Southern Conference first-team three times while leading Furman to its best three-year overall record (64-25) and best league mark (34-3) in its history. In 1974, he led the Paladins to an upset victory over South Carolina in the NCAA Tournament. He two won All-SoCon Player of the Year awards and conference tournament MVP honors. As a senior he also won the league’s Athlete of Year Award. Mayes earned first-team All-America honors by Basketball Weekly as well as second-team All-America by The Sporting News and Converse, and third-team by the Associated Press. Milwaukee selected Mayes in the second round of the NBA draft and he averaged 4.0 and 3.1 rebounds in two NBA seasons.
The Benedict College product led the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association in scoring (1964-65) with a 36.4 points per game average, finishing second in the NAIA. He totaled 2,135 career points (28.4 average) and in 1965, broke the color barrier in the Palmetto State by being asked and accepting an invitation to be the first African American to play in the Greenville (SC) Southern Textile League post-season tournament, where he was named to the all-tournament first team. He was listed on the All-America Honorable Mention teams by United Press International and Converse Magazine. In 1965, he was offered a contract by the Harlem Globetrotters and was drafted by the Cincinnati Royals of the NBA. He was left off the Royals roster when all-star guard Oscar Robinson renewed his contract. He became the commissioner of the Rucker Tournament in Harlem and remained with the Rucker Summer Professional Basketball League in Harlem, NY for the next 40 years. In 1967, he co-founded Each One Teach One, a non-profit for youth developmental and mentoring program which over the last 50 years has successfully used sports as a vehicle to motivate youth to pursue higher education. He has been enshrined in the Benedict Hall of Fame, the NY City Basketball Hall of Fame, the National Black Legends Hall of Fame, the Brooklyn USA Hall of Fame, the Bob Douglas Hall of Fame, the Harlem Roots Hall of Fame and the Nike Pro Sports Hall of Fame.
The Columbia native led A.C. Flora High to the state basketball title in 1981. “X-Man” later became a first-team All-American at Wichita State where he was a two-time Missouri Valley Conference MVP and led the nation in scoring (27) and rebounding (14.98) in 1985. His NBA career, highlighted by being named to the 1988 All-Star Team and All-Rookie First Team in 1986, spanned from 1985-98 as he played for the Seattle SuperSonics, Phoenix Suns, Boston Celtics and New Jersey Nets.
McKie played at Irmo High and was a standout guard at USC. In January 1999, he became the Gamecocks’ all-time leading scorer, surpassing Alex English and finished his playing career (1996-99) with 2,119 career points and was honored by the Southeastern Conference as an “SEC Basketball Legend” as part of its class of 2011. McKie, from Norfolk, Va., was named the 1996 SEC Freshman of the Year, and was the 12th player in league history to earn Associated Press First-Team SEC honors for three seasons. The two-time team captain played in 123 consecutive games, scored in double figures 111 times and recorded 38 games with 20+ points. In 1997, McKie averaged 17.4 points to lead the Gamecocks to their first-ever SEC basketball title. After his college career, McKie was drafted by the Connecticut Pride of the Continental Basketball Association and played for them from 1999-01, appearing in the 2001 CBA All-Star Game. In 2001-02, McKie played for the North Charleston Lowgators of the NBA Development League, and internationally, he played in France, Cyprus, Germany, Italy and Israel.
McLain is a Charleston native (St. Andrews High) and three-time basketball All-American at the University of Georgia, where she established several records and won National Player of the Year honors in 1987. She starred for U.S. Olympic teams in 1988, 1992 and 1996 and was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006.
A basketball phenom in the 1970s when women’s records were not yet formally kept, the 5-foot-5 Francis Marion College star from Florence is unofficially ranked as the most prolific scorer in college basketball history, male or female, having racked up 4,061 points (prior to the 3-point shot) by the time she concluded her college career in 1979. The four-time All-American once scored 60 points in an AIAW Tournament game, and helped lead the Patriots to three national championship appearances. Throughout her career at Francis Marion, Moore always scored in double-figures, and posted less than 20 points in only 18 of her 128 games. After college, Moore extended her career by playing several years of professional ball in the United States and South America.
JAMES E. "BIG DADDY" NEAL
Wofford College’s 6-foot-11 center from Silverstreet simply dominated his era. As a senior in 1952-53, he averaged 32.6 points a game and led the NAIA in rebounding (28 per game) before playing briefly in the NBA with the Syracuse Nationals. At Wofford, he scored 2,078 career points and held the school record for points in a game (57), and season (750), scoring average in a season (32.6) and career (23.3), while also holding rebounding marks for a game (40), season (609) and career (1,521). He also converted 22 of 24 free throws in a 1953 game.
The Clemson star from Anderson, who played for the Phoenix Suns (1981-88) and Cleveland Cavaliers (1988-94), Nance captured the NBA’s first Slam Dunk Contest in 1984 and made the All-Star team a year later, his first of three. He made the NBA’s All-Defensive first-team once and second team twice. In 1994, he retired as the NBA’s all-time shot-blocking and percentage-shooting forward.
Owens, a USC basketball standout from New York from 1969-71, is the first Gamecock player to compile 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds in three different seasons. The All-ACC center averaged 15.8 points and led the league in rebounding three times, averaging a career 13.3 boards. He spent 12 years in the pros with nine teams in the ABA and NBA, averaging 11.3 points and 6.1 rebounds.
The two-time Southern Conference Player of the Year and 1954 consensus All-American from Corbin, Ky., twice led the nation in scoring at Furman University (1953 and 1954) and set a NCAA single-game record of 100 points. He is a charter member of the South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame and the Southern Conference Hall of Fame.
Widely considered the greatest basketball player in USC history, Roche averaged 22.5 points and led the team to a 69-16 record from 1969-71, while winning ACC Player of the Year and All-America honors. The New York native later played in the ABA and NBA from 1972-81.
WAYNE "TREE" ROLLINS
The three-time all-ACC performer from Cordele, Ga., and 1977 All-American at Clemson (1973-77) became a premier shot-blocking center in 18 years in the NBA for the Atlanta Hawks, Cleveland Cavaliers, Detroit Pistons, Houston Rockets and Orlando Magic.
Talbotton, Ga., native, Miriam Walker-Samuels earned Miss Georgia Basketball honors at Central High before embarking on an outstanding career at Claflin College (1987-90).
She led Claflin to the 1988 and 1989 NAIA National Championship games and set nine NAIA records during her prolific career, including most points in a game (62 vs. Dillard in 1988), most points in a season (1,303 in 1989) and most points in a career (3,855 from 1987-90).
Walker-Samuels averaged 35.5 points per game during the 1988-89 season, and 34.7 points per game over her career. She twice won the NAIA National Tournament’s Most Valuable Player Award and was a two-time first-team All-American.
Walker-Samuels was a member of Claflin’s inaugural Hall of Fame Class in 2008. She enjoyed a successful high school coaching career, first at Keith High in Orville, Ala., and later at Sylacauga High, also in Alabama, where she guided her team to the Class
AAAA state championship before returning to Claflin in 2003 as head coach.
Walker-Samuels succeeded her coach and mentor, the late Nelson Brownlee, and continued to guide the Lady Panthers in the same rich tradition as her predecessor. In her first three seasons as Claflin head coach, she guided her team to consecutive national tournament appearances. She has been recognized as a Black College Sports Legend by the Black College Sports and Education Foundation for making a significant contribution to Black colleges.
An Indianapolis, Ind., native, Short dominated Newberry College basketball opponents from 1958-61. As a sophomore, he was South Carolina’s leading scorer averaging 20.6 points and 13 rebounds per outing, and was named All-Conference and All-State. As a junior, Short averaged 22 points and 13 rebounds, and was named All-Conference, All-State, All-Tournament and First Team All-NAIA District 26. He was the NAIA’s leading scorer, scoring 888 points for a 28.7 scoring average and 12 rebounds, earning numerous All-America honors in addition to South Carolina Collegiate Player of the Year as well as Athlete of the Year. He led Newberry to the NAIA District 26 Championship and to Newberry’s first national tournament of any kind. Short was drafted and signed by the Cincinnati Royals of the NBA. However, his desire to play was delayed as he was drafted by the Army. While in the service, he was a starter and a star on the All-Army World Championship Team, a team that remained undefeated during his Army career.
Benedict College’s basketball star from Delcambre, La., Simon was picked No. 1 in the initial ABA draft in 1967. In his second season, the spindly forward averaged 21.1 points a game and tallied 18 points in the All-Star Game.
The slick ball-handling guard from Brooklyn, N.Y., widely regarded as the best passer in USC history, Thompson averaged 10.9 points but scored when he had to, as he did in in making 10 of 12 shots at Duke to hold the highest shooting percentage by a Duke opponent for 24 years. He became a building block for the hugely successful Coach Frank McGuire era. Thompson made second-team All-ACC as well as All-ACC Tournament twice and All-South Carolina twice. He played briefly for the ABA Indiana Pacers.
A consensus All-America scorer at USC when he led the nation in scoring in 1957 with a school-record 31.3 average, Wallace also holds the school record for career average (28.0). In 1955, the Mare Creek, Ky., native led all junior college scorers at 32.8 points per game.
At 6-foot-4, Whisnant more than held his own against much larger centers when he starred on the hardwood for the USC Gamecocks from 1959-62. A three- time All-Atlantic Coast Conference selection, he was first team in 1962 and second team in 1960-61, Whisnant was named to the ACC All-Tournament team in 1962. He averaged 19.1 points in 79 games over three varsity seasons, claimed 723 rebounds and his 1,505 career points ranked in top 10 on the Gamecocks’ all-time list. Playing for Coach Bob Stevens, Whisnant attempted a record 880 career free throws (more than 10 per game) and made 567. He was a consistent scorer throughout his career as he averaged 17.0 points per game as a sophomore, 19.1 as a junior and 21.0 as a senior.
Roberta Williams became the first female to receive a full athletic scholarship at S.C. State University in 1976 when she was signed to play basketball. When her career concluded in 1980, the Charleston native and Burke High graduate became the most prolific scorer in S.C. State basketball history. Williams scored more than 2,000 points for the Lady Bulldogs and was the team’s leading scorer three seasons. She remains the only SCSU basketball player whose jersey has been retired.
The Lady Bulldogs were 121-13 during the four years she played (30-5, 28-1, 33-2, and 30-5), and she led the Lady Bulldogs to the AIAW (Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women) National Division II Championship in ‘79 and was named the tournament MVP. A year earlier, she powered State to the AIAW national championship game. Williams was a three-time All-Conference and All-State selection and also reaped All-Region honors. Twice named an AIAW All-American, Williams was a second-round draft pick of the San Francisco Pioneers, of the WBL’s (Women’s Basketball League, the first women’s pro basketball league). Following her playing career, Williams spent 20 years as a teacher in the Charleston Public Schools System and seven years as an assistant basketball coach at Burke High.
She is a member of the SCSU Athletic Hall of Fame and the Mid-Eastern Athletic Hall of Fame, and was named to the MEAC’s 50th Anniversary All-Time Basketball Team. In 2018, she was recognized as a “Trailblazer of the Game” during the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) Hall of Fame induction. September 11, 2018 was proclaimed “Roberta Williams Day” by the City of Charleston and The Avery Research Center of Charleston honored her with “Roberta Williams Day” in 2019.
The Rockaway, N.Y., product was brought South by Coach Frank McGuire, Winters shined as a Gamecock as well as in the NBA, which began as his being a 12th round pick in the 1974 draft by the Los Angeles Lakers, with whom he played one year. He moved to the Milwaukee Bucks (1975-83), where he was a two-time All-Star. Winters averaged 16.2 points a game for his nine-year professional career (1974-83), and the Bucks retired his jersey after he retired. He later became an NBA and WNBA head coach.
After a brief major league baseball career, “The Pride of Pelzer” became a Southern Textile Basketball League legend from 1951-61, making all-tournament 12 times. Although unofficial, he holds career records for most points and highest average.