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Steve Bartkowski grew up in Santa Clara, California and went on to be an All-American quarterback at the University of California in 1974, where he threw for over 2500 yards and had a 130 quarterback rating. He was also an outstanding baseball player at Cal. The Atlanta Falcons actually traded up to make Bartkowski the first overall pick in the 1975 NFL. Steve began a career as the Atlanta Falcons starting quarterback that lasted until 1985. He was the NFL rookie of the year in 1975 and was a two-time Pro-Bowl selection in 1980 and 1981, in which he threw over 30 touchdown passes each season. He was one of the most popular players in Falcons history. His number 10 is retired, and he is a member of the Falcons Ring of Honor. He played one final season in the NFL in 1986 with the Los Angeles Rams before retiring. Bartkowski is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame.

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Kevin Brown was an All-American pitcher at Georgia Tech who went on to a 17-year career in the Major leagues with six different teams. A native of McIntyre, Brown starred at Tech from 1984-86, earning all-America honors in 1985 and leading the Yellow Jackets to their first two Atlantic Coast Conference titles in 1985 and 1986. Kevin was a 1st round pick of the Texas Rangers in 1986 and also had stops with, Baltimore, Florida, San Diego Padres, Los Angeles, and New York with the Yankees. Brown was a six time All-Star and helped lead the Florida Marlins to the World Championship in 1997 developing his reputation as a clutch big-game pitcher. In 1998, he was named Sporting News National League Pitcher of the Year. Kevin won 211 games and was two-time National League ERA leader. Brown is a member of the Georgia Tech Athletic Hall of Fame.

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Larry Campbell grew up in Abbeville, South Carolina, but his name has become synonymous with Lincolnton where he spent over 45 years as a teacher, coach, and administrator at Lincoln County High School beginning in 1971. His 477 victories as the Red Devils’ head football coach is the most in Georgia High School history is puts him near the top of the all-time wins list nationally. Campbell won 11 State Titles and 33 Region Championships as Lincoln County’s head coach. He had countless former players go on to play college football, and five of his former players went on to play in the NFL. Campbell, a nine-time Georgia Coach of the Year winner, achieved legendary status as a high school football coach in the state of Georgia as well as nationally.

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Russell Ellington was born in Wadley and moved to Savannah as a child. He was a basketball standout at Beach High School and went on to play both football and basketball at Morris Brown College in Atlanta. Ellington played professional football for the New York Giants for two years before his career was cut short by injuries. He returned to Beach High School where he was boys’ basketball coach for 15 years, winning five state championships and achieving a 91% winning percentage. His 1967 team was named National Champions by Sports Illustrated. He stayed in his hometown for his next coaching stop and took over as head basketball coach and Athletic Director at Savannah State. At Savannah State, we won three SIAC and is still the school’s winningest coach of all time. Ellington was head of the Harlem Globetrotters from 1984 to 1993. After a stint at Savannah Tech (1993-1997) and Morris Brown (1997-2000), Ellington returned home to Beach High in 2005 taking the Bulldogs to the Georgia state quarter-finals with a 28–3 record.



Betty Jaynes grew up in Covington and was a two-time All-State basketball player for Newton County High School. She earned her degree from the Women’s College of Georgia (now Georgia College & State University). Jaynes went on to become the head coach of the women's basketball team at Madison College (now James Madison University) in 1970. She continued in that position until 1982, with her teams amassing a record of 142–11. She was co-founder of the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association and served as its Executive Director for 15 years. Jaynes is consider a key figure in the development of collegiate women’s sports, particularly the game of basketball.

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Guy Maurice McIntyre grew up in Thomasville where he was a dominant player at Thomasville High School. He continued his football career at The University of Georgia where he was part of two SEC Championship teams (1981 and 1982), and was a team captain in 1983. He was two-time All-SEC performer (1982 and 1983) and won the Jacobs Blocking Trophy in 1983 as the top lineman in the SEC. McIntyre was drafted in the third round of the 1984 NFL draft by the San Francisco 49ers. He played for the 49ers for 10 years and was a five-time Pro-Bowler and three-time Super Bowl Champion. He played one season with the Green Bay Packers and two more with the Philadelphia Eagles before retiring after the 1996 season. He is considered one of the greatest offensive linemen that the state of Georgia has ever produced.

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Don “Duck” Richardson was one of Georgia’s and the nation’s top prep basketball coaches at Macon's Southwest High School from 1971 until 1990. During his run at Southwest, Richardson won one six state championships and 10 region championships. Many high school observers believe Richardson’s 1979 team is the best in state history. The squad, which was led by future NBA standout Jeff Malone, Terry Fair, and Michael Hunt finished went 28-0 and claimed the mythical National Championship as the country’s best high school team. Richardson sent numerous players on to college basketball, including a few who made it to the NBA. He was the state coach of the year six times, the All-Middle Georgia Coach of the Year seven times and was named Middle Georgia Coach of the Decade in the 1970s. He was 463-90 in his career. He left Southwest in 1991 to begin the basketball program at Macon State. 

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Jessie Tuggle grew up in Griffin where he was an outstanding football player at Griffin High School. With no major scholarship offers, he signed to play at Valdosta State College where he was the school’s all-time leading tackler and a three-time All-Conference player as a linebacker. Undrafted out of college, he signed with the Atlanta Falcons, where he spent his entire 14 year career. Tuggle was a five time Pro Bowl selection and was part of the 1998 team which made it to the Super Bowl.  He is considered one of the greatest players in franchise history and is a member of the Falcons Ring of Honor. His #88 is retired by Valdosta State, and his #58 is retired by the Falcons. He is a member of the College Football Hall of Fame.

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Mark John McClinton Tutt was from Augusta and had a ground-breaking career as an educator and coach in his hometown. He taught and coached every sport at Haines Institute from 1906-1949. Because of difficulty scheduling games in that era, his teams from Haines Institute often played (and sometimes beat) teams from local colleges. He taught and coached multiple sports at Lucy Laney High School from 1949 to 1958. As a head coach, he won over 400 football games, 800 basketball games, and 300 baseball games. He was one of the most successful and influential African-American educators in the state of Georgia during the first half of the 20th Century.

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