Football’s Joe Kines and Rusty Fuller and basketball’s Wayne Wigley and Charles Burkette will inducted in ceremonies during the weekend of the Nov. 23 football season finale against Southeast Missouri.
Kines played on three conference championship teams at JSU and later coached with the Gamecocks, beginning a career in which he became one of the top defensive coaches in the game. He made stops at Clemson, Florida, Alabama (twice), Arkansas, Florida State and Texas A&M, as well as a brief stint in the NFL.
He was interim head coach at Arkansas in 1992 (behind former JSU coach Jack Crowe) and interim head coach in Alabama’s 2006 Independence Bowl game.
Fuller turned the tight end position into a viable offensive threat. He ranked in the top five in career catches, yardage and touchdowns at the end of his four-year career. In one of his most memorable games, he caught eight passes for 132 yards and a touchdown in the 1981 playoffs at Southwest Texas.
“Rusty was probably the most intelligent player on the field,” his former quarterback and road roommate Ed Lett said. “We ran the West Coast offense before it had a name and he was probably way before his time in the fact he could do sight adjustments for his pass routes. He would settle into the hole and allow you to find him; he made it real easy for me.”
Fuller was quick to return the compliment.
"Truth is, I would not be in the Hall of Fame if not for Lett ... and those other receivers," he said. "We had six or eight guys who would have 25-30 catches a year, which showed you he could spread it around and made it difficult for people to double-cover us. They all had a tremendous impact on me going into the Hall."
Wigley played on the last two of JSU’s five straight Alabama Collegiate Conference titles under coach Tom Roberson after transferring from Snead State. As a senior he shared setting the school’s single-season scoring record with teammate Danny Bryan and became the first player to be named MVP of the Junior College and Small College all-state teams in Alabama.
Burkette helped the Gamecocks win two Gulf South Conference titles and earn two trips to the Division II Elite Eight. His 1,317 career points (in three seasons) ranks 12th on the Gamecocks’ all-time scoring list.
Sports Writer Al Muskewitz: 256-235-3577. On Twitter @almusky_star.