VIDEO: 2012 Hall of Fame Inductions
By TOM ZEBOLD
USF Senior Writer
TAMPA - Three unforgettable Bulls have been immortalized by the University they helped bring to national prominence.
The USF Athletics Department had the honor of inducting Lee Roy Selmon, Chucky Atkins and Jessica Dickson into its Hall of Fame on Friday night at TPepin's Hospitality Centre in Tampa.
The 2012 class is the fourth class inducted into the USF Athletics Hall of Fame and this year's edition definitely is a special one.
Selmon's wife, Claybra, and family members accepted Lee Roy's honor on his behalf and they were joined at the podium by two of USF basketball's best-ever players. Dickson scored the most points of any male or female USF player in the program's history before being selected by the WNBA's Sacramento Monarchs in the first round of the 2007 draft. Atkins became the second USF player to have his jersey retired after he poured in 1,619 points as a Bull from 1992-96. Atkins went on to play 11 seasons in the NBA with eight different teams.
USF always is proud to honor Selmon, known as "The Father of USF Football," after the NFL Hall of Famer helped get the program off the ground during his time as a Bull. Selmon spent 19 years at USF in a number of capacities, including athletic director before his passing last year. Along with the USF Hall of Fame Honor, Selmon will forever be a part of the Bulls' athletic center that has been re-named in his honor.
"He is very present in our hearts and in the minds of all our student-athletes and our staff," USF Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Doug Woolard said. "Lee Roy Selmon is a part of the very fabric of this department."
The Executive Committee that leads the selection of Hall of Fame inductees is made up of Chair Richard Gonzmart (President, Columbia Restaurants), Oscar Horton (Owner & President, Sun State International Trucks, LLC.), Steve Horton (Assoc. AD/Compliance), Jim Louk (Asst. AD/Sales & Broadcasting), Fred Sikorski (Regional President, M/I Homes, Inc.), Linda Simmons (President, R.R. Simmons Construction, Inc.) and Mark Robinson (Business Manager, Safety Harbor Montessori Academy).
Perhaps the most recognizable figure in the Tampa Bay community, Lee Roy Selmon, a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame and popularly considered a “gentlemen’s gentleman,” spent 19 years as a member of the USF Athletics family. Selmon started as an associate athletics director in 1994 before assuming the role of director of athletics in 2001, a position he would hold until 2004. He took on a new challenge in 2004 to build financial support for USF’s move to the BIG EAST Conference in 2005. Selmon’s original appointment came in July 1993, two weeks after USF announced a $10 million fundraising effort to begin an NCAA intercollegiate football program.
Selmon's popularity in the community dates back to 1976 when he became the very first draftee of the Tampa Bay Buccaneer NFL expansion franchise. He was the NFL’s overall number one selection that season, following a brilliant career at Oklahoma. Selmon remains one of the most decorated players in modern football history. He earned consensus All-America honors at Oklahoma in addition to the 1975 Outland and Lombardi Trophies as the top lineman in the nation. In addition to excelling on the field, he earned a degree in special education in four years and distinction on the GTE Academic All-America Team. In 1996, he was named to College Sports Magazine’s All-Time College Football Team.
In nine seasons with Tampa Bay, Selmon was selected to the Pro Bowl six times. He was a four-time All-Pro (1979, 80, 82, 84) and the 1979 NFL Defensive Player of the Year when he led what many consider to be one of the NFL’s all-time best defenses. On Sept. 7, 1986, his No. 63 Buccaneer jersey was retired and remains the only Buc jersey with that distinction. Nine years later, on July 29, 1995, Selmon was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He became one of the few men who could claim membership in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the College Football Hall of Fame and the Verizon Academic All-America Hall of Fame.
Selmon is remembered at USF for his leadership, warmth and compassion. In addition to being a founding father of USF Football, he was a sounding board and mentor to both staff and student-athletes. Following his passing in September 2011, the main USF Athletics building was re-christened the Lee Roy Selmon Athletics Center. Selmon is survived by his wife, Claybra, and their three children, Brandy, Lee Roy Jr., and Christopher, who all attended USF.
One of college basketball’s premier point guards as a senior in 1995-96, Chucky Atkins played at USF from 1992-1996. Atkins became just the second USF player to have his jersey number retired on Feb. 10, 2001. He ended his career as USF’s third all-time leading scorer with 1,619 points. A four-year starter who missed just two starts while playing in 111 career games, Atkins averaged a career-high 19.3 points as a senior, the highest scoring average by a Bull in 11 seasons after Charlie Bradley averaged 21.7 ppg as a senior in 1984-85. He tied the program’s single-season assist record with 196 as a junior and led the Metro Conference with 6.5 assists-per-game in 1994-95.
Atkins' 519 career assists rank third in program history. He is also second on USF’s career 3-point list with 244 and led the Metro Conference in 3-point shooting with 84 (219 attempts, 38.4 percent) as a junior in 1994-95, the same year he led the league in assists. Atkins finished second among Metro scoring leaders that season with a 16.8 point-per-game average, falling one-half point shy of becoming only the second player in Metro history to lead the league in scoring and assists in the same season.
Atkins became the 11th USF player to score 1,000 points and just the fourth to do so prior to his senior season. The guard’s career averages include 14.6 points and 4.7 assists per game, and he was one of two Bulls to score 1,600 points and dish out 500 assists in a career. Atkins played one season in Conference USA and earned All-C-USA second team honors in 1995-96. He also was named to the All-Metro second team in 1994-95 after collecting Metro All-Freshman Team honors in 1992-93.
In addition to his collegiate career, Atkins averaged nine points and three assists for Team USA as the Americans claimed the gold medal at the 1995 World University Games. He was an 11-year NBA veteran, who had stints with eight different teams. This year, Atkins returned to Florida and was named head coach of his high school alma mater at Maynard Evans H.S. in Orlando, Fla.
Jessica Dickson led the Bulls to four straight postseason appearances including the program’s only appearance in the NCAA Tournament during her playing career from 2003-2007. Dickson ended her career with the Bulls as the school’s all-time leading scorer – male or female – with 2,402 career points, and is third among all collegiate women’s basketball players in state history. In addition, she grabbed 746 rebounds, which is sixth on the school’s all-time list, and is second all-time in career games played and career games started playing in and starting 125 out of a possible 125 games.
Dickson averaged 19.6 points per game and 7.9 rebounds per outing en route to being selected first team All-BIG EAST during her senior campaign. During her senior season, Dickson was named a finalist for John R. Wooden Award, Street & Smith Honorable Mention All-American, Naismith Award Top 50, Preseason Wade Trophy list, Top Wing Player in America by ESPN.com, Preseason John R. Wooden Award watch list, BIG EAST Preseason Player of the Year, ESPN.com Preseason Second-Team All-American, BIG EAST Player of the Week (Twice) and BIG EAST Conference Honor Roll (Three Times).
As a junior, she was named Women’s Basketball Magazine Honorable Mention All-American, Associated Press Honorable Mention All-American, All-BIG EAST First Team, BIG EAST Honor Roll (Six Times), Naismith Award Midseason Top 30, John R. Wooden Award Midseason Top 20 and BIG EAST Player of the Week (Two Times).
Dickson was named First Team All-Conference USA as a sophomore and was named Conference USA Freshman of the Year in her rookie season. She was selected 21st overall in the 2007 WNBA Draft by the Sacramento Monarchs. Dickson is currently rehabbing from injury, but expects to return to basketball overseas full time.