Green Wave News · SHS Athletic Hall of Fame, Class of 2018

Summerville High Inducts 7 in Athletic Hall of Fame for the Class of 2018

Ryan Okpych

Summerville High School has announced the inductees for the Athletic Hall of Fame’s class of 2018.

The five inductees are Randall “Randy” Ward, class of 1980 (track, cross country), Jerome “Tank” Bryant, class of 1998 (football, baseball), Reggie Williams, class of 2001 (football, track), Tillman U. Millhouse IV, class of 2005 (football, baseball, basketball), and A.J. Green, class of 2008 (football, basketball, track).

The two “special admit” category inductees are Heather Tucker and the late Johnathan “J.L.” Simmons.

The Class of 2018 SHS Hall of Fame inductees will be recognized at a ceremony in the Spann Elementary School cafeteria on 9/14 at 5:30pm and then honored later that evening at halftime of the Summerville vs. Cane Bay football game at Memorial Stadium.  Funding for the Summerville High School Athletic Hall of Fame comes solely through the annual Hall of Fame Golf Tournament.  This year’s golf tournament will be held at Summerville Country Club on July 21st.  Information on the tournament can be found in the pro shop at Summerville Country Club at 843-873-2210 or at .

Randall “Randy” Ward (1980) – Randall was an avid runner during his time at Summerville High School, earning five varsity letters and seven all-state honors during his high school career. He was a member of the 1978 Lower State Runner-Up Cross Country Team and returned in 1979 to win the Lower State Championship, placing second in AAAA at the state cross country race.  Randy and the SHS Track Team also achieved to high marks during his time as a Green Wave. He and his team also won the AAAA Track State Championship in 1979 and finished runner-up the following year. He also won several other competitions outside of SHS, including the Carolina Relays Mile Championship in 1980 and the Francis Marion Relay Mile Championship in the same year. The Post & Courier recognized Randy’s achievement and named him the High School Cross Country Athlete of the Year in 1979. After high school, he attended Brevard College and the George Institute of Technology, where he picked up more prestigious honors. After college, he was a guide runner for the USA Paralympics team and won a numerous amount of road, track, and cross country races along the east coast and Europe. Some of the more notable included 6 times USA Master Track and Field All American award, 2nd place USA Master Championship, and ranking 10th in the 2002 World Master Rankings in the 3000-meter steeplechase. Ward is described as an “outstanding person” and “hard working on and off the field” by fellow Hall of Fame member Harry Blake.

Jerome “Tank” Bryant (1998) – Tank was a three time varsity letter winner in football and four time varsity letter winner in baseball. In his junior season, the football team played in the state semi-final, losing in the final seconds to the eventual state champion. In 1996, his baseball team won the Hanahan Invitational Tournament, and in the following year, won the Region 6AAAA Championship. The Post and Courier considered him to be one of the “league’s top blockers” in region 6-AAAA during his senior season, and was praised as “a valuable part of Green Wave football and baseball success over the last few years.” In his high school football career, he had built up impressive statistics, including 21 touchdowns in one season. In his senior season on the baseball diamond, Tank’s team earned an overall record of 25-5, winning the 6-AAAA Region Championship. Following high school baseball, he was a member of the American Legion baseball team that went on to win the state championship and played in the National Championship in Virginia.  Tank was also a high performer in the classroom as a Green Wave, earning multiple academic honors. He went on to attend Presbyterian College, where he played football and earned 4 letters. His parents say that his “love and commitment to the Summerville community has brought him back to Summerville” and he has volunteered as a coach for the Dixie Youth tee-ball and YMCA U8 soccer. “Tank’s love of sports and of Summerville High School is evident – he is proud to be a Green Wave,” penned his parents.  Former teammate and Hall of Fame member Joe Call reminisced about Tank’s role on the football field, “Tank was a prototypical fullback…the throwback style.  He didn’t mind blocking and he was a tough inside runner who had good enough speed to break away from defenders.  He prided himself on ball security and we knew we could count on him to get the tough yards when it was short yardage”.

Reggie Williams (2001) – Reggie starred for the Green Wave as football and track athlete during his three year varsity career.  During his three year run on the high school football team, Williams’ earned All-Region, All-Lowcountry, and All-State honors both his junior and senior seasons. During his sophomore year, Reggie was a member of the 1998 AAAA State Champion Summerville High School Football Team.  Following his senior year, Reggie was honored with the opportunity to compete in the 2000 Shrine Bowl.  He was also extremely competitive with track and field, where he was in All State in both 2000 and 2001, including All Region and All Low Country both years. Reggie’s senior year would see him finish as AAAA State Runner-up in the discus to teammate Chase Page, leading the Green Wave to the 2001 AAAA Track State Championship. After high school, Reggie played football for Florida A & M College. He is currently the president of Centillion Sports.  Former track coach Brion Rutherford described Reggie as, “a fun loving guy who enjoyed athletics but could also turn into a fierce competitor whenever he needed to”.

Tillman U. Millhouse, IV (2005) – Tillman earned many awards across multiple sports during his time at Summerville High School. He earned three varsity letters in football from 2002-2004. His efforts as a defensive back on the grid iron led to multiple All-Region, All-Lowcountry, and All-State honors, culminating in Tillman being named to the Shrine Bowl All Star Team following his senior season. He also played basketball and baseball, where he lettered multiple times during 2003-2005, and was a member of multiple region champion teams. Tillman was also an active member in the Christian Fellowship for Athletes club during high school. Tillman would go to The Citadel, where he played football from 2005 to 2009. He then played at South Carolina State University. He was also just as successful academically, earning Dean’s List honors in the classroom. His dad describes him as a “young man of great character,” and an “intelligent, goal oriented, team player on and off the field.”  For Green Wave Coach and Hall of Fame member Tee Newman described Tillman as, “a skilled performer in football, basketball, and baseball” and “a consummate leader with a great Summerville family”.

A.J. Green (2008) – A. J. Green reached the pinnacle of high school athletics, starring as a football, basketball, and track athlete. As a wide receiver for the football team, he was considered one of the top players in the country in the class of 2008, including being names the #1 college football prospect in the nation by Sports Illustrated. A. J.’s efforts on the football field led the Green Wave to two AAAA State runner-up finishes in his four year high school career.  His 5,373 receiving yards ranks second and his 279 receptions ranks fourth in the all-time career receiving records of the National Federation of High Schools. A. J. earned All-American honors from numerous sports publications both his junior and senior seasons and was selected to play in the Under-Armour All-American All-Star Game.  A multi-sport athlete for the Green Wave, A. J. was also a team captain on the SHS basketball team that won the 2007-2008 South Carolina state championship against Spartanburg High School. A.J. also competed as a long jumper and triple jumper for the SHS Track Team. After high school, he committed to playing at the University of Georgia, where he would play on the football team from 2008 to 2010. A.J. was selected as the 4th overall pick in the 2011 NFL Draft by the Cincinnati Bengals. In his rookie season, A. J. broke nearly all of Cincinnati’s rookie receiving records and led all NFL rookies in receptions and receiving yards.  He has been a perennial All-Pro performer and has been selected to seven straight Pro Bowls.  His Summerville High School jersey, #1, was retired shortly after he was drafted and remains the only retired number in the history of the storied Green Wave Football program.

The following are being inducted into the Hall of Fame as special admit.

Heather Tucker (Softball Coach) – Heather Tucker joined the Green Wave coaching family in 2003.  Since that time, Summerville Softball has become a dominant force in the lower state. Going into the 2018 season, Coach Tucker’s career coaching record stands at 338-112, averaging an impressive 24 wins a year.  In addition to the impressive win total, Coach Tucker’s teams have won 10 region championships, 8 district championships, and 3 lower state championships.  She has been honored by various publications as Coach of the Year 8 times.  In addition to developing great softball players, Coach Tucker helps to raise terrific young women as a part of her softball program.  On many game nights our stands are full of Green Wave Softball alumni who come back to cheer on Coach Tucker and our current Green Wave Softball players.  Former Green Wave Softball standout Sarah Montei remarked about Coach Tucker, “Coach Tucker was the true epitome of a role model for me as a student athlete. She helped guide me in many aspects of my life, both on and off the field and for that I am forever grateful. It is obvious that her number one priority has always been the success of her student athletes. She instilled discipline, respect, family and demanded the best out of everyone who played for her. It was truly an honor to play for Coach Tucker and I couldn’t be more happy for her and her family for this well deserving recognition.”

Johnathan “J.L.” Lacy Simmons (Green Wave Super Fan) – While he didn’t attend Summerville High School, Simmons could be spotted cheering on the Green Wave at almost every single home game. He moved to Summerville in December of 1951, after serving in the Navy. Soon after, he became one of the most avid Green Wave fans ever. For over 60 years, Simmons seldom missed a single home game, until his health failed. “I truly believe that if the Green Wave were playing at the North Pole, and there were only two fans from Summerville at the game, one would be Mr. Simmons and of course Joan McKissick,” wrote Billy G. Baker, a personal friend of his. The last game he attended was last year, where he sat and watched from his wheelchair–proving his dedication for the Green Wave. People described him as a walking encyclopedia of SHS athletics, and had reserved 10 seats at the stadium since the program started. J. L. worked at his family’s barber shop, where it became tradition for football players to get their haircut. James S. Yarborough, SHS class of 1974, said that “thirty-two years later, I learned the significance of Simmons Barber Shop and Summerville High School Athletics. I was able to learn so much more about the history of SHS athletics than I could ever imagine. We talked sports every day and his passion was Summerville High School and Clemson University.” Unfortunately, Simmons passed away November 7th, 2017, leaving the hearts of many shattered, as Summerville’s superfan won’t be heard cheering on his team anymore.  Most Green Wave fans will tell you that the common answer to any Green Wave question was to go to Simmons Barber Shop on Main Street and ask J.L.  His support of the Green Wave Family will be missed.

To be eligible for the Summerville High School Athletic Hall of Fame regular admission Green Wave graduates must be out of school at least ten years, be in good standing in the community, and be able to present a substantial body of work in high school athletics and beyond.  Annually, only five regular admissions can be selected by the Hall of Fame committee.  To be eligible for the special category, an individual’s application for admission must present a substantial impact on the Summerville High School athletic program or student-athletes.  Annually, the selection committee can admit up to two applications under the special admission category.