*Editor’s Note: It is with great respect to honor the memory of Leigh Cooper Wallace in posting this article. Before her passing, Leigh was so kind to allow WataugaRoads.com to post articles about her sexual assualt story, and to give updates on the TV program that shared her story. She was, and continues to be, an inspiration to women that falls victim to such a horrible crime*
Appalachian State University athletics unveiled perhaps the most star-studded Hall of Fame class in school history on Wednesday when it announced that legendary football coach Jerry Moore (1989-2012), football stars Armanti Edwards (2006-09), Chip Hooks (1991-94) and Daniel Wilcox (1999-2000) and women’s cross country/track and field standout Leigh Cooper Wallace (1988-92) have been selected for induction to the Hall of Fame.
Appalachian State athletics’ 41st Hall of Fame induction will be held in conjunction with the Mountaineers’ 2015 football opener versus Howard on Sept. 5. Kickoff has been set for 3:30 p.m. at Kidd Brewer Stadium.
Festivities begin with Appalachian State’s annual Hall of Fame breakfast, which will be held at 9 a.m. in the Blue Ridge Ballroom at Appalachian State’s Plemmons Student Union. Tickets cost just $15 per person and can be purchased by calling Yosef Club donor relations coordinator Natalie Harkey at (828) 262-3108.
Additionally, the inductees will be recognized during several pre- and in-game celebrations at that afternoon’s contest versus Howard at Kidd Brewer Stadium. Kickoff has been set for 3:30 p.m. and details regarding game-related Hall of Fame recognitions will be announced as plans are finalized.
The only way to secure a reserved seat at Kidd Brewer Stadium for this historic Hall of Fame Day is to purchase season tickets, as only a limited number are expected to be available when single-game tickets go on sale Aug. 4. Full- and half-season ticket packages, including a new three-game Saturday package, are currently available and can be purchased online at appstatesports.com/tickets.
In honor of this year’s remarkable Hall of Fame class and the Year of the Fan, all season ticket packages will be on sale for $15 off their regular price on Thursday, June 4 ONLY.
To take advantage of Thursday’s special offer, fans must call the Appalachian State athletics ticket office at (828) 262-2079 between 9 a.m.-4 p.m. The special offer will not be available online.
JERRY MOORE (football coach — 1989-2012): Compiled a 215-87 overall record and led Appalachian State to three NCAA Division I-AA/FCS national championships and 10 Southern Conference championships in 24 seasons as head coach … winningest coach in school history (215 victories) … .712 is the third-highest winning percentage by a football coach in Appalachian history … is tied for 18th all-time among NCAA Division I coaches with 242 career victories, which includes stints as head coach at North Texas (11 wins from 1979-80) and Texas Tech (16 wins from 1981-85) … led Appalachian State to three-straight national titles from 2005-07, making Appalachian the first program to ever win three-straight Division I-AA/FCS national championships, the first Division I program since Army from 1944-46 to win three-straight national championships, the only program from the state of North Carolina to ever win an NCAA football national championship and the only public institution in the state of North Carolina to ever win a national championship at any level of college football … led the Mountaineers to 10 Southern Conference championships (1991, 1995, 1999, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2012) … matched SoCon records with six-straight conference championships (2005-10) and seven in eight years (2005-10, ’12) … won 26-straight SoCon games from 2007-10, good for the second-longest conference winning streak in SoCon history and the league’s longest in 51 years … the Mountaineers made 18 NCAA Division I-AA/FCS postseason appearances under Moore’s tutelage (1989, 1991, 1992, 1994, 1995, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012) … set a Division I-AA/FCS record 13-straight postseason victories in contiguous years (2005-08) … led Appalachian State to perhaps the biggest and most prominent upset in college football history, a 34-32 triumph over Michigan on Sept. 1, 2007 … the victory over Michigan, college football’s all-time winningest program which came into the contest ranked No. 5 in the Associated Press Top 25 poll, marked the first time that an FCS team ever toppled a nationally ranked FBS opponent and compelled the AP to change its long-standing history of only accepting votes for FBS teams in its Top 25 poll, paving the way for the Mountaineers to become the first FCS team to ever receive votes in the poll, which they did on three occasions in 2007 … three-time AFCA National Coach of the Year (2005, 2006, 2007) … is the only Division I (FCS or FBS) mentor in the 79-year history of the AFCA National Coach of the Year Award to win it three-straight times … 2006 Eddie Robinson Award (NCAA Division I FCS National Coach of the Year) … 2009 Liberty Mutual FCS Coach of the Year … seven-time AFCA Regional Coach of the Year (1994, 1995, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010) … eight-time SoCon Coach of the Year (1991, 1994, 1995, 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010) … no other coach has ever been named SoCon Coach of the Year more than three times … coached the only two-time winners of the Walter Payton Award (FCS Player of the Year — Armanti Edwards, 2008 and ‘09) and Buck Buchanan Award (FCS Defensive Player of the Year — Dexter Coakley, 1995 and ‘96) … coached 69 first-team all-Americans (68 at App State) and 176 first-team all-conference honorees (164 at App State) in his 24 years as a head coach … became Appalachian State’s second College Football Hall of Fame inductee in 2014 (joining 2011 inductee Coakley) … is also a member of the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame, the Bonham (Texas) H.S. Athletics Hall of Fame and the Baylor University Athletics Hall of Fame Wall of Honor.
ARMANTI EDWARDS (Football — 2006-09): The only two-time winner of the Walter Payton Award as the NCAA Division I FCS Player of the Year (2008 and ‘09) … only four-time all-American in Appalachian State history … set 64 school records and 14 Southern Conference records during his collegiate career, including both the school and conference records for passing yards (10,392), rushing yards by a quarterback (4,361), total offense (14,753 yards) and touchdowns responsible for (139 – 74 passing, 69 rushing) … was the first player in NCAA Division I history (FBS and FCS) with 10,000 passing yards and 4,000 rushing yards in a career … finished his career ranked second in FCS history in total offense and rushing yards by a quarterback … led Appalachian State to two NCAA Division I FCS national championships (2006 and ‘07) … is the only quarterback in SoCon history to lead team to four conference championships … is one of only three quarterbacks to lead team to three league titles … was 42-7 in 49 career starts … four-time all-conference performer … 2008 and 2009 Southern Conference Player of the Year … 2009-10 Southern Conference Male Athlete of the Year … was a Dean’s List student and graduated in three-and-a-half years, a feat achieved by less than three percent of all Appalachian State undergrads … selected by the Carolina Panthers in the third round of the 2010 National Football League Draft … went on to spend four full seasons in the NFL with the Panthers (39 games from 2010-13) and Cleveland Browns (two games in 2013).
CHIP HOOKS (Football — 1991-94): Led Appalachian State in rushing during all four years of his collegiate career (1,062 yards as a freshman in 1991, 836 as a sophomore in 1992, 919 as a junior in 1993 and 885 as a senior in 1994) … earned all-Southern Conference recognition all four seasons — first team as a freshman and junior and second team as a sophomore and senior … is one of only seven four-time all-conference honorees in Appalachian State history … was the first freshman in Appalachian history to rush for 1,000 yards, en route to being named the 1991 SoCon Freshman of the Year … remains one of only three freshmen in school history to rush for 1,000 yards, joined by Armanti Edwards (2006) and Marcus Cox (2014) … finished his career ranked second in Appalachian State history with 3,472 career rushing yards, 86.8 rushing yards per game and 15 100-yard games and remains among the top five in school history in all three categories … helped lead the Mountaineers to the third SoCon championship in program history in 1991.
DANIEL WILCOX (Football — 1999-2000): In only two seasons as a Mountaineer, caught 66 passes for 1,028 yards and 10 touchdowns as a versatile and talented wideout/tight end/H-back … amassed 46 receptions for 740 yards and 10 touchdowns as a senior, en route to first-team all-Southern Conference and second-team all-America recognition … helped lead Appalachian State to the 1999 SoCon championship and 2000 NCAA Division I-AA national semifinals … despite not being drafted, went on to spend eight seasons in the National Football League with the New York Jets (2001-02), Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2002-03) and Baltimore Ravens (2004-09) … was a member of Tampa Bay’s Super Bowl championship squad in 2002 … enjoyed his greatest individual success as a pro in Baltimore, where he caught 76 passes for 595 yards and eight touchdowns over five seasons … also played for the Rhein Fire of NFL Europe in 2004 … returned to Appalachian State in 2010 to complete coursework for a bachelor’s degree in communication and serve as a student assistant on head coach Jerry Moore’s staff, working closely with the Mountaineers’ wide receivers … will join the Appalachian IMG Sports Network radio crew as color analyst for Mountaineer football broadcasts in 2015.
LEIGH COOPER WALLACE (Women’s Cross Country/Track and Field — 1988-1992): Was a six-time all-Southern Conference performer and four-time conference champion as a standout distance runner … four conference titles all came as a senior — 5,000 meters (indoors) and 3,000, 5,000 and 10,000 meters (outdoors) … is one of only two athletes in SoCon history to win all three distance races (3,000, 5,000 and 10,000 meters) at one conference championship meet (joining App State teammate Whitney Ball) … named all-SoCon as a junior and senior in cross country, placing third at the conference championship as a senior in 1991 … in her four years at Appalachian State, she helped the Mountaineers capture all 12 SoCon cross country, indoor track and field and outdoor track and field team championships … served as an inspiration for the entire campus community as the survivor of a kidnapping and sexual assault while a student at Appalachian in 1989 … regularly shared her story at Appalachian State’s annual Walk for Awareness, which promotes campus safety, commemorates lives lost to violence and supports victims and survivors of violent crimes … went on to be a longtime teacher and coach at nearby Watauga High School and helped lead the Pioneers’ cross country and track and field teams to numerous conference, regional and state championships in her 10-plus years as a coach … was inducted into the Watauga County Sports Hall of Fame in 2006 … died after a brief and sudden illness in 2012 at the age of 43.