HATTIESBURG, Miss. – Southern Miss announced Friday the members of the 2019 M-Club Hall of Fame, which includes Ron Cheatham (football), Brian Dozier (baseball), Damion Fletcher (football), Kenya Peters (softball), George Tillman (football), V.J. Trolio (golf) and Glen Whisby (men’s basketball).
The induction banquet, presented by Magnolia State Bank, will be held on Friday, Nov. 22, at the Trent Lott Center on the Southern Miss campus. Doors open at 6 p.m. with a reception followed by the program and dinner beginning at 6:30 p.m. Tickets to the induction banquet are available for purchase at $40 each, while reserved tables of eight can be purchased for $320.
The following day, the newest member of the M-Club Hall of Fame will be honored during the Golden Eagles’ home contest against WKU. Kickoff is set for 2:30 p.m.
To order tickets please contact Mary Alexander at email@example.com or 601.266.5422. Cash, check and credit cards (Visa, Mastercard, American Express) are accepted.
Here is a look at the 2019 M-Club Hall of Fame class:
George Tillman (Football/Defensive End, 1979-1982)
Tillman came to Southern Miss as a freshman in 1979 and became a four-year letterman. From his defensive end position, Tillman was a relentless pass rusher and run defender. He is tied for fourth in career fumble recoveries with six in his career. He made the first-team All-South Independent Team in 1980, 1981 and 1982. Tillman played extensively as a true freshman, earning his first letter. He became a starting defensive end in the spring of 1980. At 6-3, 220-pounds, he had good speed and was aggressive. "Too Tall" as he was called, became a fixture on the Nasty Bunch defense. Was the Associated Press "Southeastern Lineman of the Week" in the Eagles win over Tulane in 1980 when he intercepted a pass to set up the Eagles winning field goal. He earned honorable mention All-American in 1980 and 1981. He garnered Defensive Player of the Week against Alabama in 1981. One of the great defensive lineman in Southern Miss history. Tillman earned his degree from Southern Miss in 1985.
Ron Cheatham (Football/Linebacker, 1972-75)
Recognized as one of the finest linebackers to wear a Golden Eagle uniform, Cheatham was credited with 374 tackles during his four-year career. He gained recognition as one of the most aggressive linebackers to ever wear a Golden Eagle uniform. He picked off five passes and earned a starting role as a freshman at defensive end. During his final three years of his career, he was an outstanding linebacker. Named to the Associated Press All-South Independent Team in 1974. Voted a permanent team co-captain of the 1975 Eagles. He graduated from Southern Miss in 1976. Coached for the Golden Eagles from 1976 to 1983.
Damion Fletcher (Running Back 2006-2009)
Fletcher came to Southern Miss from Biloxi High School in 2006 and almost immediately became the starting tailback. A four-year starter and letterman, Fletcher set a record in 2007 for most yards rushing in a season 1,586, for a career 2006-2009, at 5,302, as well as the most rushing attempts in a career at 1,009. He also holds the record for career rushing touchdowns with 44, as well as 100-yard games in a season (9) and for a career (25). In 2006, he was 2nd-Team Freshman All-American by Sporting News, a member of the All Conference USA Freshman Team, an first-team All-Conference USA selection and a 2nd team all-league pick by Collegiate Football News. In 2007, he was an All C-USA 2nd team pick and Conerly Trophy winner as best college football player in Mississippi. In 2008 and 2009, he was All-Conference USA selection.
Glen Whisby (Basketball 1991-1995)
Entering the M-Club Hall of Fame posthumously, Whisby was a four-year letterman and starter for the Golden Eagles from 1991 to 1995. He was a talented big man who had the ability to muscle inside for easy shots or step away from the basket and shoot the long range jumper. Whisby also was a tremendous and feared shot blocker. As a sophomore (1992-93), he averaged 16.0 points and 10.3 rebounds per game and blocked 61 shots. As a junior (1993-94), he averaged 14.2 points and 8.3 rebounds, along with 41 blocked shots. As a senior (1994-95), he averaged 15.2 points and 9.8 rebounds and blocked a career high 69 shots. He ranks ninth in career scoring at Southern Miss with 1,598 points, 5th in career rebounds with 1,009 and 2nd in career blocked shots with 232. He is one of only five players in school history with 1,000 career points and 1,000 career rebounds. He earned selection to the Metro Conference All Freshman team in 1991-92 and was a 2nd-team All-Metro Conference three times.
Brian Dozier (Baseball/Shortstop, 2006-2009)
Dozier, who was a member of the World Champion Washington Nationals, started at shortstop immediately as a freshman in 2006 and lettered for four years. His record at Southern Miss includes a No. 9 ranking all-time in batting average for a season at .391 (2009), ninth in singles with 68 (2008), fourth in at-bats with 269 (2008). For his career, Dozier ranks second in hits with 307, seventh in doubles (55), eighth in total bases (424), seventh in runs scored (185) and second in singles (229). He led the team in both hits (92), doubles (17) and RBI (46) in 2008. He was a Freshman All-American in 2006 and Conference USA Freshman All Conference team, along with being named NCAA all-regional tournament team in Tuscaloosa. He earned second-team all-Conference USA in 2008 and 2009. Dozier was drafted in 8th round by the Minnesota Twins in 2009. He hit 42 home runs in 2016, the most ever hit by an American League second baseman. He participated in the 2014 Home Run Derby and was an All-Star during the 2015 campaign – homering in his first ever plate appearance. He won a Gold Glove for his defensive play in 2017 and participated in the last two World Series, playing for the Dodgers in 2018 and the Nationals in 2019. He and his wife, Renee, live in Hattiesburg during the offseason. He earned a BSBA degree from Southern Miss is 2009.
Kenya Peters (Softball/Catcher, 1999-2002)
A four-year letter-winner at the catcher position for the softball program. She was a key member of the 1999 and 2000 World Series teams. Hit the game-winning home run against LSU to help win the regional championship. She finished her career with a batting average of .264, recorded 173 hits, 31 doubles, two triples and 33 home runs, to go along with 111 RBI. She ranked in the Top 10 in her career on-base percentage, doubles, home runs and total bases. Ranks first in fielding percentage with a .989 average, committing only 23 errors out of 1,941 chances. She belted 13 home runs during her junior season and is the all-time leader in games played. She earned Conference USA second team honors and named to the Conference USA All-tournament team in 2001. The teams she played on won 189 games. Peters earned her degree from Southern Miss in 2002.
Victor John (V.J.) Trolio (Golf/1996-1998)
Trolio finished the 1995-96 season with a 77.27 stroke average while appearing in just four tournaments. He averaged 77.6 during the 1996-97 campaign while seeing action only during the fall season. He came into his own as a senior in 1997-98 when he posted a 73.17 stroke average and won the Arkansas State Invitational with a 54-hole total of 216 while also earning the rank of No. 1 in C-USA for 1997. Trolio posted five top 10 finishes during the 1997-98 season and finished 13th in the Metro Conference Championships. He played in the NCAA East Regional at the Melrose Golf Course in Daufuskie Island, South Carolina, where he finished tied for 70th with a 54-hole total of 224. He had only three scores over 75 all season long in 35 rounds. Trolio was the first player from Southern Miss to participate in the NCAA Championship and was the 2007 Mississippi Open Champion. Earned a degree from Southern Miss in 1997.
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