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After her freshman season, one student-athlete shares some of the lessons she has learned



Advice on taking selfies, when what NOT to do is just as imporant as tips on what to do




Former Golden Eagle pitcher Dave Wilkinson spent more than 20 years in the U.S. Secret Service, including several on the Presidential detail

Plus... * * * *

Dimensional Dalis The man with the Golden Arm This Day in Tech History Inspiration in Poster form ...and some great photos

May / June 2014

Volume 2, Issue 4


Editor’s note: We had two outstanding cover stories in this month’s issue, so... just as national sports magazines will publish editions with regional covers, we decided to go with two distinctly different covers, one for each cover story. Please let us know your thoughts. Email to:




DIMENSIONAL DALIS Golden Eagle middle distance runner Dalis Connell has learned some tough lessons in her young life. She has also learned to share her knowledge and experiences through social media, with 150,000 followers on Twitter


* Protecting the President * The man with the Golden Arm * How to take a Selfie * Life Lessons Learned * This Day in Tech History * Inspiration in Poster form ...and some great photos

May / June 2014

Volume 2, Issue 4


Stockpiling the pros...

photos by Ben Corda & Tony Marable

A school-record five players heard their names called during the 2014 MLB First-Year Player Draft on June 5, including two junior members of the squad, David Hess (pictured bottom left) and Seth Lucio (bottom right). Also taken were seniors Daniel Miles (bottom row, second from left), Brandon Thomasson (top row, second from left), and Jordan Parris (top row third from left).Two more Golden Eagles joined their teammates among the ranks of professionals by signing free agent deals, including Zach Stephens (bottom row, third from left) and Ross Spurgeon (top row, far right; signed with Schaumburg Boomers of the Frontier League).



Senior sendoff... The winningest senior class in Tech baseball history, the eight members of the 2014 senior class tallied 126 victories over four years, including a record breaking 40 wins in each of the alst two seasons. The senior class posed for a group shot on photo day earlier in the fall and included: (front row, from left) Zach Zarzour, Daniel Miles, Zach Stephens, Stanton Taylor. (back row, from left) Garrett Baugh, Brandon Thomasson, Jordan Parris, Ross Spurgeon.


photos by Ben Corda Production by WD Stone and Associates


Formation decisions.. And you think coach Watson Brown and his staff of offensive coaches have a tough time trying to select a formation for every play, pity the graphic designers who worked at building Tech’s 2014-15 promotional material, such as posters and pocket schedule. With six players, each photographed in about a dozen poses, grouping them just right meant moving around the lineup, shifts, audibles, until arriving at the final formation (above).



photo by Tony Marable



Dirt devil... Six-time All-American third baseman Daniel Miles vacuums up a rocket-shot down the third base line in typical highlight-reel fashion. Needless to say, Golden Eagle baseball managers Eric Cooper and Brandon Pullins dreaded washing his uniform most days.


photo by Matt Reynolds



Insurance premium... Sophomore Madison Taylor slides safely home to cap off Tech’s six-run inning as the Golden Eagle softball team endured a 21-hour rain delay and came back to eliminate host Jacksonville State from the OVC Tournament with a 6-3 decision. Unfortunately, it was the final game of the year for the red-hot Tech team when OVC officials cut the tourney short due to weather complications.


come together From the editor Boil it down and there are two reasons an entire nation will come together for a common cause. One is tragedy (war or terrorism, devastating weather such as hurricanes and tornadoes, or to work toward a cure for an illness or disease). The other reason is sports. Events such as the World Cup or the Olympics. Wish that we would NEVER need to bond over the causes in the first example. Wish also that we would have far more opportunities to gather for the second. Sports. On the international level it brings an entire country to its feet. On a national level, entire regions produce legions of fans for teams. On an an even smaller, more local scale, sports teams and events can mobilize communities and campuses. The staff in the Tennessee Tech Athletics Department is working diligently to find ways to assist in mobilizing Upper Cumberland area sports fans to build support and increase crowds at Golden Eagle events. The mission is to improve the Fan Experience when attending games at Tech’s Tucker Stadium, Eblen Center or other campus venues. We would LOVE to hear from you regarding your experiences and your thoughts about things we can do to improve your visit. And, to get you to make more and more visits. We have some tremendous season ticket deals available (such as a Family Plan or the Back the Golden Eagles plan). We think once you come one time, our hospitality will bring you back again and again. So, please consider attending a game this coming season — come early in the season. We would hate for you to love your time here but run out of games to attend! The national tragedy portion of my examples above really hit home for me recently, while on a camping trip with my son, Matt. We visited the Flight 93 Memorial in rural Pennsylvania, and listened to stories by the National Park Ranger of the heroic efforts by the passengers and others. I had just finished writing the cover story about Dave Wilkinson, and his role in protecting President George W. Bush during the hectic hours of Sept. 11. Hearing his detailed account of that day brought back memories of where I was (safe at work in Cookeville), and how the events unfolded. Then, after crafting Dave’s words into our cover story, for us to actually stand on the spot where that fourth flight went down...that brought it all together for me. It truly moved me. I hope you will enjoy the story about Dave Wilkinson (I found some of it simply fascinating), and the second cover story about Dalis Connel, as well as the other material in this issue of unlimited magazine. And, I hope you have many opportunities to gather together with friends and families throughout the region and bond for happy, joyful and cheerful occasions. Such as Golden Eagle football, volleyball and soccer games this fall. Rob Schabert Assistant Athletic Director / Editor Please send your feedback to:

On the cover(s) Since we have two major stories in this issue, we decided to go with two covers. On the first cover is former Golden Eagle pitcher Dave Wilkinson, holding a model of Air Force One. He wrapped up a 22-year career in the U.S. Secret Service, a position which placed him on the jumbo jet with several presidents. On the second cover, we feature former distance runner Dalis Connell, who has had an intersting past several years including stints on a couple of reality TV shows and a Twitter account that numbers 150,000 followers, not to mention her running career and work toward a degree, which she will receive in December.



“From the moment the planes hit the building, he (President Bush) wanted to go back to the White House and be in the Oval Office, and he fought us tooth-and-nail...We had to explain to him that it was our job, constitutionally as agents of the Secret Service, to protect the President, and we owed it to the American people to do our job and keep him safe, so it was our call more than his.� - Dave WIlkinson


Protecting the President By Rob Schabert Assistant Athletic Director for Sports Information

Former Golden Eagle pitcher Dave Wilkinson’s 22-year career as a Secret Service Agent had many memorable moments, none as dramatic as protecting President George W. Bush during the hectic hours of September 11, 2001.


was probably the most memorable day of this generation, a horrible event that shook and shattered the world. Dave Wilkinson and the United States Secret Service were well-prepared for anything, but their duties took a dramatic turn on September 11, 2001. Wilkinson, a Tennessee Tech graduate and former pitcher on the Golden Eagle baseball team, stood in the classroom at Emma E. Booker Elementary School in Sarasota, Fla., when President George W. Bush learned that a second plane had hit the World Trade Center. As the Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Presidential Protection Division, Wilkinson was part

of the Secret Service team escorting the president to what was supposed to be a routine, joy-filled visit to read with second grade students in Sandra Kay Daniels’ classroom. But for Wilkinson and the rest of the staff with President Bush, it became an intense combination of executing an evacuation plan and improvising actions. “To say the least, it was a memorable day,” Wilkinson said in an interview at the Atlanta Police Foundation, where he serves now as President and CEO following his retirement from the Secret Service after a 22-year career. continued on next page

Secret Service agent Dave Wilkinson (far right) walks down Pensylvania Avenue during the 2001 inauguration with President George W. Bush and Laura.


cover story A glimpse behind the scenes

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“It was a day that I’m proud of how well the agency performed. You spend all this time and effort and training creating a seamless secure environment for the president, and at the same time creating a contingency for every conceivable emergency,” he said. “And when you see the plan come off in a flawless way, it makes you proud that you’ve put in all the time and effort, and the agents performed as admirably as they did. “And not just the agency; the military, the local police. I was proud of the way everybody stepped up and performed in such a stressful situation. I was proud of the President. From the moment the planes hit the building, he wanted to go back to the White House and be in the Oval Office, and he fought us tooth-and-nail to go back to the White House. We had to explain to him that it was our job, constitutionally as agents of the Secret Service, to protect the President, and we owed it to the American people to do our job and keep him safe, so it was our call more than his.”

Calm amid the chaos Amid the chaos unfolding in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania, information reached the president while he was seated in front of the class as the seven-year-olds read “The Pet Goat.” An advance Secret Service team had prepared for the visit, including devising an evacuation plan to get the president out of the school and back to Air Force One, should there be any trouble. That is routine for every appearance by the president, Wilkinson explains. After the first plane hit the World Trade Center, it was determined there was no intelligence at that time that the President was in any danger whatsoever, so there was no reason to react too quickly. “A few minutes later it came over my radio that a second plane had hit the building, so we immediately knew this was a terrorist attack,” Wilkinson says. “I realized that the President is the only one who doesn’t know this second plane has hit the building. The people in the rooms next to us are watching it on television, and all the agents are being told about it over the radio, and the news media is probably hearing about it over their radios. But the President doesn’t know. It’s the President, the teacher and these 15 or 20 students


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who don’t know. About that time, Chief of Staff Andy Card walked over and whispered in the President’s ear that the second plane had hit the building.” Across the hall were all of the other students, teachers and area business leaders, waiting to hear from the President after his classroom visit. It was decided to have President Bush speak briefly to the gathering rather than simply depart. He took just seconds to apologize to the group and head out. Shortly afterward, Air Force One got airborne with military support, and flew to Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana. There, President Bush went on TV to speak to the American people. “Still, there was a lot of unknown,” Wilkinson says. “By then, Flight 93 had crashed in Pennsylvania, so it was not over. We did not know the full scope of this terrorist act. We needed to get the President to the safest location we could, which was a top secret, secure location out west.” Only much later in the day was it determined that it was safe for the president to return to the White House. During the entire ordeal, Wilkinson never had an opportunity to let his family know he was safe or to learn if they were safe. “No, I didn’t. Throughout the day, communications virtually went out everywhere. Cell phones were blocked for a while. We were forced to use secure lines only. I had absolutely no time to talk with anybody in my family. I knew they were safe in Maryland. My concern was if they were worried about me,

but I knew there was coverage of what the president was doing, so they knew where I was and what I was doing. I didn’t have a chance to speak to them until about eight o’clock that night. As you can imagine, they were on pins and needles to hear from me as to what w Far from being on the same level, Wilkinson still credits lessons learned while pitching for Tech with helping him cope and make decisions in tough situations. “Playing baseball at Tennessee Tech certainly helped me to grow up and mature to the point where I could make decisions in pressure situations,” he says. “Of course it’s not the same type of pressure as with the Secret Service, but it certainly prepared me. “That’s probably why there are a lot of athletes in the Secret Service. At one time, the entire starting defensive backfield from Notre Dame was on my shift at the White House. They like to get a lot of athletes involved. I think every agent in the Secret Service will tell you they learned to be a team player, to put the mission first as your absolute top priority. And, anyone with a sports career will tell you that helped them to become the Secret Service agent they became.”

Full flavor of college life

In the 70s, Wilkinson was playing baseball at continued on next page

Dave Wilkinson during his days as a Golden Eagle


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Farragut High School in Knoxville, and was being recruited by several schools around the region. Tech baseball coach David Mays, who had previously coached at Karns High School, was well aware of Wilkinson. “Coach Mays came to one of my games, and talked to me in the parking lot and asked me to come down for a tour of the campus and for a visit down there. I was really intrigued by Tennessee Tech. I knew it was only 90 miles away, and family and friends would be able to come down there and watch me play. It was a couple of weeks later I came down there and spent the day with coach Mays, and walked around the campus and fell in love with it. I thought it was a perfect campus. It was just the right size. It had the full flavor of college life, but then, it was not so big that you would get swallowed up, and not so busy that I would feel lost. So, I absolutely fell in love with it.” He made his college decision right after he returned home from his Tech visit. “I was most impressed with the university, and most impressed with Coach Mays, and I thought there’s the guy I’d like to play baseball for, and more importantly I thought there’s the university where I’d like to spend my next four years.” While he wasn’t quite sure what his major might be, or his future career path, Wilkinson wasted little time in making a decision that would affect the rest of his life, meeting a teammate who would become one of his best friends. “The first person that I met was, of course, Coach Mays. I remember showing up and standing in the registration line, and picking out my books and all that, and actually being assigned a roommate. I remember meeting my roommate, he was a nice guy, and I looked forward to getting to know him better. “But I went over to the baseball office, and there were a lot of other players there. And there was a kid there from New Jersey by the name of Joe Fisher, and he was a real clown, making jokes and all that, and he and I just hit it off. One of the first things he asked me was ‘why don’t we be roommates.’ I told him I had just met my roommate, but we went back over to


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the registration office and got it all changed, and arranged so we could be roommates. So, I met coach Mays first but I met Joe Fisher right after that and we became pals, and we’re still friends.” Wilkinson played four seasons for Mays, and came to develop a keen knowledge and fond insight into the veteran coach. “They key words I’d use to describe David Mays? A family man, a great guy, a great personality, and I thought he was a tremendous coach on the field. A field general. Many years later, after playing college ball, watching travel ball, being involved in baseball for the past 25 years, I recall how he knew how to make great decisions on the field. He would call for a pitchout, so I threw a pitchout, and every time he called for one, the guy would be stealing and we’d throw him out. He was tremendously smart on the baseball field as a coach.”

Beginning the comeback A couple years before Wilkinson began his career at Tech, the university made a drastic decision in trying to meet requirements of new federal legislation, called Title IX. In order to fund women’s athletics at that time, the administration removed all of the funding for the men’s spring sports (baseball, golf, tennis and track) and moved it to women’s programs. Many studentathletes who had been recruited to the university opted out, transferring to schools where they could play immediately, without penalty. It meant Mays was forced to rebuild the baseball program from the ground up, with a roster featuring a host of walkons. “I remember coach Mays calling me into his office after my freshman season and telling me

the university was bringing back some scholarships. It was something he had committed to me that they were working toward. There were eight of us. He told us we were sort of the building blocks of this program moving forward.” Lack of funding didn’t diminish the enthusiasm in the dugout. “We had a great time in my freshmen year, although we didn’t have a very good record. I think there was some concern that some of us might leave. I can remember Coach Mays coming to watch me play a lot that summer, after my freshman year, and I know there was concern that a bunch of us might transfer. I don’t even know if it was legal, but several colleges were recruiting me after my freshman year, hoping we would leave Tech, and of course I said I had no intention of going anywhere other than Tennessee Tech.” That group of players that Mays referred to as the “building blocks” of the program remained in place. “Yes, we did know what we were doing, that they were building the program, and we were sort of the core group of kids and the role we were playing. In fact, in my sophomore year I even started recruiting some of the better players in Knoxville and talkcontinued on next page


cover story continued from page 15

ing to them about coming to Tennessee Tech.” One of those Knoxville prospects was Mark Fontenot, who eventually etched his name into the Tech record books as a relief pitcher of note. “I remember a game we were playing at Vanderbilt, and we opened up a 6-0 lead early in the game. They had a guy who hit a line drive up the middle, and I threw my arm out to try and stop it. It wasn’t the smartest thing I’ve ever done. But the ball deflected to our third baseman, and he threw him out. “The problem is, my arm went completely numb, so they thought maybe I had broken my arm. They took me to the hospital. When I came back, it was two hours later, and we were leading 6-5 with the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth, and Fontenot struck out the last guy and I remember thinking I was glad I got him to come down here.” Wilkinson looks back fondly on his playing career and earning his degree. He readily admits he wasn’t a model student. “My ERA was definitely higher when I was at Tech than my GPA.” He did manage to learn valuable lessons, both in the classroom and on the field.

“I tell my children now you’ve got to start thinking about your future and what you want to do, and it’s probably the same thing my parents told me during my junior and senior years in high school, but I absolutely had no idea what I wanted to do. Absolutely not. “People would ask me ‘what do you want to do after college’ and I would say I want to play pro baseball. Of course, I knew the odds of that were one in a thousand, but that was still my answer. The reality of it is, I didn’t know. I studied business at Tennessee Tech, I wasn’t the best student in the world, but I did okay. I got by. I was good enough to get somewhere close to a 3.0 grade point average, but it was probably toward the end of my term at Tech that I started thinking about a career in law enforcement, and more specifically, a career with the U.S. Secret Service. “What I saw in my time at Tech was a couple of players who didn’t grow up. What I learned is that you have to grow up, you have to learn to take care of yourself. You learn to excel. You learn to prosper. And those are the life lessons I try to teach to my

Who Was Better?

Having served closely with two U.S. Presidents (George W. Bush and Bill Clinton), we asked Dave to compare them in areas that the media doesn’t typically inquire: Which of your presidents was a better golfer? “That would be President Clinton because he played a lot more golf. He was probably about a 10 or 12 handicapper. I was on the golf course with him hundreds of times. President Bush didn’t play all that often, but we he was such a good athlete, he might go out and shoot the same score without nearly as much practice.” Which of your presidents was a better grill cook? “I would bet President Bush. He was a real outdoorsman. He liked to get his hands dirty, go out and cut down trees, ride tractors, and I know that he loved bar-b-quing.” Which of your presidents was a better joke teller? “Actually, both were very good at that. I’d probably say President Clinton. He always had something humorous to say. Actually, both of them usually had


something humorous to say. As an agent, you might not have those personal moments, but as a supervisor you do spend more time with them. I would say this one ends in a tie.” Which of your presidents was a bigger baseball guy? “I did get to talk a little baseball with President Bush, who was a baseball guy, but really not all that often. We talked mostly about security. But we did talk some about the Rangers. I can tell you someone who was really a baseball aficionado, and that was Mrs. Clinton. When someone started a conversation, I was amazed at how much she knew about baseball. This was during the summer of (Sammy) Sosa and (Mark) McGwire, and I was amazed at how much she knew. President Bush, too. He could talk baseball. President Clinton was a bigger basketball fan. He was an Arkansas fan.”

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sons.” Growing up helped lead Wilkinson to find another satisfying path in life. “My wife, Renee, went to the University of Tennessee. We went to rival high schools (Karns). They had these Diamond Girls who kept score and ran the scoreboard, and we loved playing Karns because of the Diamond Girls. My wife was one of those Diamond Girls. Right after I started at Tech I met her. Because of my career in the Secret Service, with the travel and time away from home, we decided to wait a little bit to have children. We had our two sons (Jake and John) when I was about 36 years old. Jake is big into team sports. John is a little more into hunting and fishing and outdoor stuff.”

they normally hire about 50. That, and the fact that they hire a lot of athletes, helped my chances. They like athletes. I was hired on by the Secret Service at the age of 22, and in all my years with the Secret Service, I never met another agent who started that young. When I look back on it over the years, I realize just how fortunate I was.” Wilkinson spent his first year training for the job in South Georgia and Washington, D.C., and was assigned to the Cincinnati Field Office. Like all new agents, he spent his time doing criminal investigations, investigating counterfeit currency, and credit card fraud, and some time doing protection details. That assignment might be protecting the president, the vice president, or foreign dignitaries that come into the country. “So you’re signed in with a field office and you’re Reaching the “major leagues” spending half your time doing those types of investigations, and the other half of your time you’re being While his dream of pro ball didn’t develop, sent out to support these types of protections. Wilkinson found a different way to reach the “major “My first protection assignment was to go to leagues” within his profession as a member of the Hawaii and Tokyo with President Reagan. When Presidential Detail in the U.S. Secret Service. you’re a brand new agent, you’re what they called a Typically, the age of incoming Secret Service post-stander. The president’s detail is in charge of agents is 30 or 31 years, following a brief career in security, advance security, everything, but as you can law enforcement on a local police or sheriff’s force imagine, they need hundreds of other agents and and delayed further through a highly competitive police officers and hiring process. they are what is called In the summer a post-stander. Basiof 1983, Wilkinson cally, you go out and was offered a position they tell you where to with K-Mart through a stand and where not career fair at Tech. to stand. And that’s “I really had my where I started my heart set on being a career.” Secret Service agent, After four-andand I didn’t really want a-half years in the be a local police ofCincinnati Field Office, ficer and spend time he was bumped to a working my way up. I post in a major field wanted to go for the office at one of the major leagues, solarger U.S. cities such to-speak, right from as Los Angeles, Miami the start. I heard that and Chicago. a long-time Secret The moment President Bush heard from the White House Chief “I asked to go to of Staff about the second plane hitting the World Trade Center. Service agent was Dave Wilkinson was standing just off camera. Miami because they retiring. I had an uncle had some real aggreswho helped set me sive investigations going on down there. With the up with an interview at the Secret Service agency drug trade and the counterfeiting being so prolific in in Nashville, and we really hit it off. I was lucky. They were hiring about 300 new agents that year, when

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South Florida, it’s a great place to work as an investigating agent.” In January 1988 he began a nearly four-year stay in the Miami Field Office. “I had a great time working counterfeit cases and drug cases in the Bahamas, South America, and all over South Florida.” In the middle of those investigative assignments, it wasn’t unusual to drop everything and go on a protective assignment. “President Bush 41 would come down to go fishing every year in Key Largo or Ocean Reef, so we spent a lot of time down there. That was a great part of my career and I loved it down there. Most of the heaviest stuff (in Miami) was in the 80s, so it happened before I got there. But I do remember the first week I was down there the DEA was involved in a shootout at a local shopping mall and 200 rounds were fired, and I realized this is a whole different environment. It was a real learning experience.” In 1992, he achieved his ultimate goal when he was elevated to the President’s Detail. “They let me know that I was going to get the President’s Detail, and it was just a question of when there would be an opening. The orders came out and 120 days later, I was in the White House, standing on the marble floor protecting the president.” When he first arrived at the White House, it was President George H. W. Bush (41). “I was absolutely in awe, as you can imagine. First, I was in awe of the other agents. It seemed like everybody was the best of the best. I’m with all these sharp, innovative, aggressive agents, men and women. So my first thought is, wow, it’s going to be tough to compete with this and excel in this environment. I was a little in awe of it all, but also intrigued by the level of professionalism. I had never seen any-


thing like it. They were concerned about how you dressed, the kind of shoes you wore every day, how you addressed other people. “At first it seemed a little bit over the top, but what I realized is we were making sure that the United States Secret Service is seen as the absolute, most professional, most respected law enforcement agency in the world. If you’re going to be out there, you’re going to do it right. From the training, to the briefings you received every day. I was intrigued, but I was inspired by it. I was inspired by the professionalism. The level of attention to details was absolutely unbelievable. And I kind of took to that. I thought it was fantastic. It was something I wanted to be part of. It’s something I loved about being a Secret Service Agent.” Wilkinson was on one of three shifts responsible for protecting the president, including travel on Air Force One. “I loved every part of it. I loved the travel, and wearing all the stuff you’ve got to wear, the bulletproof vest, all the training.”

Changing of the guard When President Bush lost in the 1992 election, Wilkinson was sent to Little Rock, Ark., and assigned to the transition team that would bring Bill Clinton into the White House. “I spent a lot of time with President-elect Clinton, jogging with him and so on. All the video you saw of him going to McDonalds…we were right there with him. We brought him back to the White House from Arkansas and I spent about the next six years as part of his detail during his presidency.” In 1998, Wilkinson was promoted and sent to Austin, Texas, to run the Secret Service office. That post, however, didn’t last long. “I got the call they wanted to make me assistant agent in charge of the Presidential Detail back at the White House, so I went back to Washington, D.C. When I got back, President Clinton was just starting his final year in office. I spent one more year with him, then spent the first two years with President Bush 43 in office. I knew him well from being around him so much when his father was the president, then in Texas.”

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Safety still top priority Retired from the Secret Service, Dave was approached in 2005 by a group of business leaders in Atlanta and Mayor Shirley Franklin, asking him to become the President and CEO of the Atlanta Police Foundation. “They weren’t interested in an organization designed to raise money. They wanted to create an organization that drives the safety and security planning for the city of Atlanta. An organization that works with law enforcement, the Mayor’s office, Homeland Security, and other entities,” Wilkinson explains. “I am really proud of what we’ve been able to accomplish. We’ve been able to get businesses, foundations, and law enforcement all working closely together with the police chief, and others, to build a safer city. Crime is down in Atlanta about 50 percent. There is actually less crime now than in the 60s, with a much larger population and geographic size.

“It has proven to be the ultimate public-private partnership. Police chiefs around the country see it as the No. 1 Police Foundation in the country. We’re the strategic arm for the city in planning security. We spend a lot of time making sure the city of Atlanta is at the cutting edge in policing. We work to make sure it’s the most emergency-prepared city as possible. We have developed a seamless security plan for every possible emergency, and we will continue to make sure we drive crime down here in the city.” Setting down crime the same way he used to set down opponent batters during his baseball career for the Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles. --------------------------------Dave Wilkinson was awarded the Distinguished Service award from President Bush for supervision of agents and decisive actions on September 11, 2001. Dave lives in Brooks, Ga., with his wife, Renee, and his two sons, Jacob and Jonathan.




David Hess was the Golden Eagle baseball team’s Friday night guy in 2014, making him the ace pitcher of the squad. In June, he was drafted by Baltimore. In May, we asked the Tullahoma. Tenn., native to answer 10 simple questions.

Coach Quote


PCoach Bragga’s favorite quote is “Make P My celebrity crush is Natalie Portman, good decisions.” especially when she was in Star Wars.

P My favorite meal is chicken parmesan.


P Reese’s peanut butter cups. I eat those like it’s my job.



P If I was in the circus, I would be a chain saw juggler, because they live life on the edge.

Sweet Sounds

P My favorite artist is Lecrae. He’s a christian rapper.

Jersey Swap

P If I could trade places with any of my teammates it would be Tyler Brazelton. I just want to experience a day in his life and what it is like to have his ankles.

Tech Support

P I like to support all the teams, but football is my favorite. I know a lot of the guys and they support us.

Super Powered

P If I could have any super power, it would be the power of invisibility. I’d be able to pull any prank on anybody at anytime.


P If I could be any animal it would be a lion. It’s because the Lion King is my favorite movie and Simba is such an inspirational character.


Close your eyes and make a wish... Freshman outfielder Anthony El Chibani braces for impact after laying out to steal a base hit from Dalton Hewitt of Southeast Missouri in the semifinals of the OVC Baseball Tournament. Tech defeated the regular season champion Redhawks, 9-2, to advance to the championship game.


photo by Tony Marable




how to take a selfie

Need advice on how to take a proper Selfie?� See next page.....


how to take a selfie These oh-so-simple rules will get you on the right track to taking good selfies. Try to be a little bit creative with your pictures. And have fun.

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Pay attention to the background. Often with selfies, the setting is the reason for the photo. Perhaps you are traveling and want to document yourself in front of the Taj Mahal or Golden Gate Bridge. Offset your face so there’s room in the frame to capture the scenery. Don’t over-filter. Yes, filters can be incredible. And they make our skin look flawless. But, if you cannot recognize yourself in the image, it’s not really a selfie. Consider the angle. Yes, a higher angle makes you look thinner, but this is because it also makes your head look massive. We are human beings, not dolls. Soften that angle. But, some people look great when they hold the phone up and angle their face upward — think about it! Switch it up and find your best side and your best angle. Don’t be scared to try something different!

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Do use good lighting. There’s nothing worse than a photograph taken with a built-in flash, except perhaps for a selfie taken with a built-in flash. Instead, use natural light. Standing next to a window will give your selfie a soft, natural look. Do look at the camera, and not the screen. If you’re going to take a picture of yourself looking straight forward, make sure it is at the camera and not the screen, people can tell.


Don’t overdo it. You should take a lot of selfies, because that’s the best way to ensure you end up with a good one. But you should only post a very small percentage of the shots you take. There’s nothing like a Facebooker who posts a new selfie every couple of hours. Keep your postings to a minimum, because otherwise your friends will start to think you’re a bit of a sociopath.

Do smile. Don’t use duck face expression, unless you’re making fun of it on purpose. Smiling is a much more flattering and natural way to pose.


life lessons learned

A Golden Eagle freshman student-athlete reflects on lessons she learned during her first year in college. Her 20-point list would be excellent advice to include among the material given to incoming freshmen. Intro by Rob Schabert Whitney Robertson enjoyed a highly successful golf career at Clarksville High School, so when she signed with coach Polk Brown to continue her playing career and earn her education at Tennessee Tech, the odds were good that she would add to that success as a Golden Eagle.


But the move from high school to college can sometimes be a daunting task. Not everyone makes a smooth transition, despite the best efforts of the institution. In Whitney’s case, however, the transition was no problem. In fact, she flourished. It’s a path that didn’t surprise Brown. “Her personality is outstanding; she was able to adjust to the college lifestyle immediately,” Brown said. “She’s such a personable young lady, and I believe that’s why it was so easy for her to make the transition from high school to college, be away from home, and make friends easily in addition to her teammates. “As far as golf is concerned, the thing that impressed me so much about her is the peace of mind she carries while out on the course,” he added. “The first few weeks I was around her, I realized that nothing really seemed to bother her on the course. She really had an acceptance of the fact that she was going to occasionally hit poor shots, which is paramount to being successful during the course of a round. She just had that certain grit about her. She is always determined and she knows how to put adversity behind her after going through it while playing.” In her first year as a college student at Tech, Robertson posted a solid GPA of 3.70 while beginning coursework toward her major in exercise science/prephysical therapy. On the course,

she had the low average on the team and was named the Golden Eagle Most Valuable Player, in addition to earning a spot on the OVC all-newcomer team. She tallied five Top 10 finishes and two Top 5 efforts, collecting AllTournament honors at the OVC Championship. She also shared the team’s Impact Award. During her prep career, she earned four letters in golf under Vicki Moncrief and also received two more letters in softball under Joe Warren while at Clarksville High School. As a member of the golf team, she helped win back-toback TSSAA Class AAA State Championships in 2011 and 2012, and led her team to three consecutive district and regional titles as a sophomore, junior, and senior. Individually, she was an all-state selection in each of her final two seasons at CHS, finishing sixth at the TSSAA Class AAA State Championship Tournament her junior season and fourth as a senior. A member of National Honor Society, she was awarded the Point of Pride Award in both 2011 and 2012, and also earned the Excellent Student Athlete Award. She enjoyed plenty of success on the junior circuit as well, winning seven TGA Junior Tour tournaments including first place at the 2012 Toyota Tournament of Champions. So, with that background, it came as no surprise that her transition into being a collegiate student-athlete went so well. She

reflected on adjusting to college life as a freshman with a post on Facebook. Here are Whitney’s words: As I wrap up my freshman year at Tennessee Tech, I’m reflecting on a few things I learned in my first year. 1. Making friends is extremely easy if you just be yourself. 2. Planners are a necessity. 3. Naps are a precious, precious gift. 4. Say yes. A lot. Pull yourself so far from your comfort zone; you won’t regret it. 5. But also understand that “No” is a complete sentence and doesn’t need explaining. 6. Toilet paper runs out FAST. 7. Playing Trash Can Jenga is not as fun as it sounds. 8. Call your parents frequently. 9. Invest time in getting to know acquaintances personally. 10. Old fashioned mail is extremely heart-warming to receive. 11. It’s completely okay to go to class in the clothes you slept in (I think). 12. Get to know the international students. 13. Get involved on campus. I mean it. 14. You will EVENTUALLY remember how to get to Walmart from campus. 15. Stay in touch with people back home. 16. Saying goodbye never gets easier. 17. TRUST GOD’S PLAN IS WAY BETTER THAN YOURS WILL EVER BE. 18. A year seems like a long time, until you blink and its time to pack up the dorm. 19. A year can also seem like a short time. Until you stop and look around and realize all the relationships you’ve formed and all the memories you have of the year and you start to question how a whole year could have possibly passed. 20. When it’s all over, you’ll want to go back and do it again because despite it being the craziest, scariest time of your life, it was sort of beautiful and liberating.


the man with the golden arm A high school phenom out of Goodlettsville, Tenn., Russell Petty turned down an offer that matched Mickey Mantle’s signing value to pitch at Tennessee Tech By Dylan Vazzano


ho is Russell Lee Petty? A man with a golden right arm that prompted Tennessee Tech to make an investment of historical proportions. An arm whose athletic roots are the stuff of folklore with a legendary high school performance. A performance that helped spark offers comparable to that of the great Mickey Mantle. And offers turned down in lieu of a tale that combines our national pastime with bluegrass music. Russ Petty, born January 11, 1932, grew up in Goodlettsville, Tenn. where he developed into a high school baseball phenom at Goodlettsville High School. The lanky right hander grabbed the spotlight and the attention of scouts with a showing for the ages in a 3-2, 10-inning win over Litton High School. Petty went all 10 Above: Russ Petty pitches in Korea on July 4, 1954. frames, striking out 23 batters to set the Nashville InterBelow: A clipping from the Nashville Tennessean, featuring scholastic League record, a mark that still stands to this players from Lipscomb and Tech. Golden Eagle players, from day. left, are Joe White, Don Knies, Russ Petty and Alex Underwood.


Russ was featured in Bluegrass Magazine. Below is a portion of a page from the article.

His performance whet the appetites of some major league clubs as the Pittsburgh Pirates, New York Yankees, and St. Louis Cardinals came calling with an eagerness that almost broke the door down. In fact, on the night of Petty’s high school graduation, Pirates’ scout Shaky Kane was sitting in his house with an offer comparable to the amount of money that Mickey Mantle signed for. Yet it was Tennessee Tech that made an offer that Petty couldn’t refuse. TTU reportedly gave the promising pitcher the first baseball scholarship offer in school history and thus a Golden Eagle was born.

Before his Tech tenure began, Petty received yet another offer, this time from an unlikely source. The proclaimed “Father of Bluegrass,” Bill Monroe, reached out to Petty to play on his summer league baseball team, formally known as the “Bluegrass All-Stars.” The team centered around two concepts that are as about as American as you can get…bluegrass and baseball. Petty and the rest of his teammates, most of them much older than the recent high school graduate — some who even played professionally — traveled with a bluegrass band to put on shows that featured a ball game and continued on next page


...golden arm a concert. The band and ball club trekked around Tennessee, lower Kentucky, Alabama and Georgia, with the baseball team squaring off against local clubs, and the band putting on a performance either before or after the game. Two shows, one ticket. Bill Monroe and the rest of the band would use home plate or the pitcher’s mound as their “stage,” playing in front of crowds as small as two or three hundred in some of the towns, or as large as over 1,000 if it was a nice stadium. When that summer chock-full of music finally came to a close, it was Petty who set the tone in his collegiate debut the following spring. In his initiation into college baseball, Petty tossed seven innings of one-run baseball, striking out 14 and walking just one in a 7-1 Tech win over Evansville. The nearly lights-out effort continued on next page

Above: Russ shows off a catch. At right: Nancy Petty presents TTU Director of Athletics Mark Wilson with her husband, Russell Petty’s letter sweater for future display.


Do you have something for our Athletics Archives and future display? We’re looking for Golden Eagle memorabilia and collectibles. Please contact the Athletics Deptartment at 931372-3940 and let us know. Thank you!

Russ and his family


...golden arm also featured a piece of history as Petty punched out four Purple Aces in the fourth inning, setting a school-record that will likely never be broken (one of the strikeout victims reached first base when the Golden Eagle catcher couldn’t handle the pitch). Petty went on to have a solid collegiate career and while at Tennessee Tech, he was drafted into the U.S. Army and proudly served during the Korean War. At the end of the war and before coming home, Petty played baseball on the Army Corps of Engineers baseball team,


acting as the only member who wasn’t a professional. Petty would go on to work for the US Army Corp. of Engineers, before serving as the System Resource Manager at Percy Priest Lake for over 30 years. It was in September of 1957 that he met the love of his life, Nancy. They met, she says, in the Penny Arcade at the Tennessee State Fair, and the two were married within a year on Aug. 30, 1958. The couple had two daughters, Sabrina and Sheila.

Upon Russell’s passing last October, Nancy donated Petty’s letter sweater to Tennessee Tech Director of Athletics, Mark Wilson. “We were honored to receive Russell’s letter sweater and are privileged to have it as a way to remember a great athlete and a great man,” Wilson said. “Russell embodied everything our athletic department and university stands for. He had a tremendous playing career here at Tech and we are proud to have his letter sweater as a way to honor his legacy.” Who is Russell Lee Petty? That’s who!

Right: Petty’s name appeared in many headlines throughout his career. Below: Petty on the job as System Resource Manager at Percy Priest Lake with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, a post he held for over 30 years.



POSTER POWER Coaches use key words as building blocks to their pregame speeches, their pep talks, and sometimes even in casual conversation. Here are a few key words interpreted into inspirational posters.

Featuring TTU Softball

Featuring Jaelyn Todd

Featuring Mitchell Hill and Matt Marsielle

Featuring Evan Fraliex


Featuring Ellie Iaciofano

Featuring Mason Griffin

Featuring Krys Cates

Featuring Whitney Robertson


Featuring Sterling Smith and Brennan Huber Featuring Taylor Blazei

Featuring Kennedy Wade Featuring Alex Arovin


in your ear

Luke Woodason’s


A junior defensive back from Dalton, Ga., Luke will return next fall as a leader on and off the field, serving as a SAAC representive in his senior season. We asked him to share some of his favorite tunes...

Breakdown by Jack Johnson

It is the most peaceful and relaxing song you will ever listen to. The ukulele is so good in this song, too.

La Vie En Rose by Louis Armstrong

Mainly because of the notes that Louis hits at the end of the song. The way he can play the trumpet is amazing.

Hey Jude by The Beatles

‘Naaa nah nah nah nah nah naaa’ ... I have nothing else to say.

In The Mood by Glenn Miller Orchestra

I love the sound and melody of the song and my grandpa listened to jazz and big band, so I have a piece of him with me.

Over the Hills and Far Away by Led Zeppelin

Jimmy Page on the guitar is a work of art. This song gets stuck in your head for all the right reasons. The lyrics are so good and it goes down for me as one of the greatest rock songs of all time.



Purple Pride Caravan Dates: Thursday July 10 - Jamestown Walmart Thursday July 17 - Smithville Walmart Tuesday July 22 - Cookeville Hometown IGA Thursday July 24 - Carthage Walmart Thursday July 31 - Sparta Walmart Tuesday Aug. 5 - Livingston Jerry’s IGA Thursday Aug. 7 - McMinnville Walmart Thursday Aug. 14 - Crossville Walmart Thursday Aug. 21 - Cookeville Walmart Tuesday Aug. 26 - Algood Walmart



Dimensional Written by Jocelyn VerVelde



A former track and field athlete at Tennessee Tech, Dalis Connell is not only known for her athletic abilities, but also for her cameos on TEEN MOM and BEING MACI. She is also extremely popular on Twitter and Instagram.

itness has always been in Dalis Connell’s blood. Helping people has been on

her heart. The daughter of a personal trainer and a professional bodybuilder, Dalis grew up around it and became active herself. She decided to major in Exercise Science, Physical Education and Wellness (EXPW) to keep it in her life and to officially be able to help others by concentrating on personal training.


Through the track and field team, Dalis made one of her best friends, Landry Loving. Landry, pictured with Dalis, will be a junior next season.

“I think training people to lose weight is more along the lines of what I want to do,” Dalis said as she elaborated on why she chose her major and concentration. “I like helping people change their lives, inspiring confidence.” She had to learn to adapt at a young age. “I grew up in Ventura, California,” said Dalis. “It’s quite different than Tennessee. It was a culture shock when I moved to Chattanooga. I moved here my junior year of high school because of some family stuff. My dad, Brian, has always lived here so I moved to live with him. If I weren’t dating Seth (Lucio, a junior on the Golden Eagle Baseball team) I’d probably move back. However I don’t have any family there anymore.” Dalis chose to attend Tennessee Tech to earn her degree and to compete for the Golden Eagle track & field program after her cousin gave her insight. “My cousin (Anna Connell) used to go here, and she really liked the track program. The other schools that were looking at me, I didn’t really like them. Tech was close enough to home, but far enough away to feel like I am on my own.”


“Tech is really good at encouraging its student athletes to always do their best in everything, athletically and academically.” Competing in the mid-distance races on the track, Dalis came in with goals like most athletes. “My goals were to make it to the top spots in conference. Unfortunately, I never quite got there. But I stuck with it. There was a time I wanted to go home, but I stuck it out, and I am proud of myself for that.”

“I want to make her proud.”

“I want to be a reminder to future athletes that no matter what you have going on, think about the bigger picture. Even though I didn’t have the success I wanted during track, I did work really hard. I was hardworking, but also goofy and always trying to make people feel better.” Dalis also realized how much of a family atmosphere the Golden Eagle athletic department provided when she went through one of the hardest moments in her life. “When my mom passed away my junior year,” Dalis started with tears welling in her eyes. “Before she

passed, she told me to always work hard. She died of liver disease and she wasn’t healthy. My major is important to me because I can help other people be healthy. She said ‘Don’t ever follow in the footsteps I took,’ so I want to make her proud.” “Coach (Tony Cox) was understanding when I had to go to California to be with my mom, All my friends were also there for me. When things like that happen, I want to be alone, so I didn’t really reach out, but I always knew my Tech family was there. They helped and coach helped. The teachers were also really understanding.”


Strike a pose Constantly striving toward her goals revolves around trying to make her mother proud, according to Dalis. “When I was younger, my mom got me acting classes and things like that, so when I was younger she pushed me to do it and I wasn’t very interested. But when she quit becoming interested, that’s when I became interested. That’s what gave me the idea to keep pursuing it. I just got a manager in April; he’s like an agent, and goes and promotes me and gets me work. So over the summer and when I graduate, that’s what I will be doing.”


“The first tanning catalogue I did I was on the cover, and we were way out in the forest, and were shooting around a waterfall,” Dalis recalled of her first publication. “I had to get in the water and the fish were biting my feet. I mean, it was fun, but that was the most exciting shoot I’ve been on. I have three shoots set for this summer and my manager is working on setting up others, as well.”


Sudden Spotlight Being a part of a popular reality show is something many dream of doing. Little do they know, however, that it can cause physical and emotional stress. Thousands of people watching, judging, choosing sides, loving you, hating you. Dalis was warned by her former boyfriend (Ryan Edwards) that he had been — and would continue to be — featured on a popular MTV reality show, Teen Mom and the special that followed, Being Maci. Ryan is the father of Bentley Bookout with his on-again, off-again girlfriend, Maci Bookout, star of MTV’s 16 & Pregnant and Teen Mom. Dalis was dating Ryan during the filming of Teen Mom and Being Maci. To set the scene, Ryan and Maci, both of Chattanooga, Tenn., were featured on the first season of MTV’s 16 & Pregnant in 2009 after Maci became pregnant with Bentley. Teen Mom, a spinoff of 16 & Pregnant, then went on to follow Maci’s life as she raised Bentley. Maci got fed up with then fiancé Ryan when he did not help her juggle parenthood, school, and work to her satisfaction, so the couple broke up. Enter Dalis. She and Ryan started dating in the summer of 2011, which placed Dalis into the final season for Teen Mom and playing a role in the Being Maci feature. Being the “other girl” to Maci and Ryan’s relationship proved to be something Dalis had to deal with on social media and through Internet tabloids. Maci fans hated Dalis. Others felt sorry for her. But more grew to love her, and she grew to love herself even more. “Learning how to deal with all the negativity and public criticism was hard,” said Dalis. “At first it hurt me. But then I learned that I needed to love myself more, and it didn’t matter what people who didn’t even know me said.” Being on the show also helped Dalis learn other life lessons. Needless to say, Ryan was not the ideal boyfriend.


“I would get hundreds of comments on twitter saying ‘you should kill yourself’’ and horrible things like that.” “And I would say to myself that I know that I’m not a terrible person.” “Ryan was cheating on me for the last eight months we were dating and I didn’t know,” explained Dalis. “I found out the same week that my mom passed away and that’s why we broke up for good. The whole experience was a good life lesson. I don’t deal with lying anymore. I am more aware of my relationships now. I listen to what people are saying now instead of telling people that they just don’t know him.” Having an entire relationship being inspected and watched by the skeptical public eye gives a person a new perspective on how to handle future relationships. That includes social media. Fans of Maci bashed Dalis, while people who were just petty judged her. How did she deal with all this negativity that was being thrown at her? “When Teen Mom was on, the negative comments were awful, because the show portrayed me in such a negative light. I would get hundreds of comments on twitter saying ‘you should kill yourself’ and horrible things like that. And I would say to myself

that I know that I’m not a terrible person. So I just had to learn to shake it off. Now I don’t get much, but when I do, I just realize that the person making the comment has a problem because they feel the need to speak negatively about someone they don’t even know.” “When the negativity first started, I was so anxious, I couldn’t sleep. And when I was at school, people were talking. At first, I had really bad anxiety, and my mom had been sick that whole time. I had to get on anxiety medication; I’m off of it now. Now it’s positive media and it’s significantly better to deal with.” The entire episode was definitely full of experiences that not everyone will go through. “Overall, it was a learning experience to help me be okay with myself. I was insecure before that, but with getting so much negative feedback, I had to learn to love myself and not listen to it. The biggest thing I learned was to love myself and respect myself instead of listening to the people.”


Ten Healthy Tips From Dalis 1. You often think you’re hungry when you’re simply just thirsty! DRINK A LOT WATER. 2. Instead of mayo in your tuna or chicken salad, use PLAIN greek yogurt. 3. Try to limit your carb intake after 5 p.m. 4. Try not to eat two to three hours before you go to bed. 5. Switch to whole grain pasta or bread and switch to lean and less sodium meat. 6. Limit yourself to two cheat meals a week, but GO ALL OUT on those meals. Don’t make yourself wish you ate more. 7. Instead of bread, make a wrap with lettuce. Instead of crackers, use cucumber slices. 8. Fruit is healthy, yes, but sugar is still sugar so limit it to three servings. 9. Protein bars can be deceiving, check their sugar and carb content. 10. When you desperately want your latte, get it with no whip cream and skim milk. You won’t believe how many calories that cuts


Social Butterfly Social media engulfs most of society today. Whether it is for news, sports scores, chatting with friends, or finding a new workout routines. Nearly everyone uses some form of social media. Finding new workouts is the topic Dalis has decided to focus on with her more than 150,000 followers. That’s right, 150,000 followeres! How does a regular girl become “twitterfamous”? It definitely has something to do with her stints on Teen Mom and Being Maci, but she has kept those followers around with her positive outlook on life and her fitness posts. Both Dalis’ Instagram and Twitter feeds are full of meal ideas, workout videos, fitness photos and photos of Dalis being Dalis and LOVING life. “It started with Teen Mom,” says Dalis. “But after that, I kept posting about fitness. I post workout videos and inspirational posts, and that’s the reason a majority of the people follow me. “Over the summer, I will do more workout videos to help people who don’t really have knowledge of what to do for a workout. For the people who keep up with me for modeling, I will be posting more photos from those shoots, as well.” It’s still not all fun and games as Dalis will occasionally have to deal with negative comments about her, or comments about her friends after she posts a picture. “When I post pictures with my friends, people will sometimes comment friend” and weird comments like that. And since my friends haven’t really dealt with that, they take it more to heart, so I have to tell them that if anyone comments or cyber bullies you, the commenter would never do that in person and they probably have a problem with themselves. That’s my message to people. I always try to be positive on social media, I think that will attract more people and people can relate that to their lives. The more followers I get it does help modeling because it makes me relevant, and I know that sounds silly but it’s how the industry works.” Dalis will be graduating from Tennessee Tech following the 2014 Fall semester and will be continuing to pursue her modeling career as well as her dream of helping people change their lives through physical fitness and weight loss.

If you want to keep up with Dalis as she embarks on her life after Tennessee Tech, you can follow her on Twitter and Instagram at @DalisPaige.


photo by Matt Reynolds


That’s what friends are for... Golden Eagle Cortney Fry (11) gets a celabratory hug at home plater from teammates after hammering a home run to jump-start Tech toward a victory in the OVC Softball Tournament.





November 15

vs. Memphis State


52 1952

Golden Eagle Football

With perfection on the line and the necessity to back up an invite to the Tangerine Bowl, the Tennessee Tech football team left nothing to chance. One of only a handful of teams in the country with an undefeated record, and having just accepted an invite to the New Year’s Day Tangerine Bowl a few days prior, the Golden Eagles soared into Overall Field for a battle with Memphis State (now the University of Memphis). Behind 360 yards on the ground, 105 of them on the legs of Jack Van Hooser (photo left), and a stifling TTU defense that yielded just 57 yards rushing, Tech cruised to a 35-0 victory over the Tigers to keep perfection alive. When the evening ended, the Golden Eagles found themselves in rarified air as one of just three teams in the nation to see nine wins an no losses next to their name in the newspaper, and just a small collection of teams with perfect marks. Among Tech’s companions…UCLA, Georgia Tech, Michigan State, and Southern California. How ‘bout them Golden Eagles?




April 29

at Arlington Golf Course A record-breaking performance highlighted a spring afternoon in Richmond, Ky. as Tennessee Tech’s Randy Darcy broke the Golden Eagle alltime single round scoring record at the Eastern Kentucky Invitational. The Engineering major from Hendersonville, Tenn. fired an impressive 64 in the first round of the invite to surpass Dee Bennett’s 1967 round of 65. Darcy’s remarkable feat stood for over 30 years, before PGA Tour Winner Scott Stallings shot a 63 in the Murray State Invitational back in 2005. Even with Stallings’ 63, Darcy stays tied for the lowest under par score in TTU history, as Stallings faced a par 71 layout while Darcy’s 64 was in a par 72 course.


72 1972

Golden Eagle Golf

Randy Darcy


Reach out... Senior Kendall Hooper stretches out to take a throw at first base and retire an SIUE runner during the OVC Softball Tournament in Jacksonville, Ala. The way things worked out with the OVC Tourney ending early due to weather, Tech is one of only two teams nationally who ended 2014 with a post-season victory, joining Florida, who ended with a win in the Softball World Series.


photo by Jim Hooper



photo by Cody Bryant



A good day to smile... President Phil Oldham and Director of Athletics Mark Wilson were on hand to congratulate two student-athletes at the annual Derryberry Award presentation. Distance runner Meghan O’Donoghue (left) was a co-winner of the honor for 2014, while basketball standout Molly Heady was one of two other finalists for the award.


photo by Tony Marable

One giant leap for two outs... Tech second baseman Zach Zarzour leaps out of the way of a sliding baserunner after hurling the ball to first for the second out of a double pay against NYIT in February. The Golden Eagles swept the four-game series, outscoring the Bears 55-7.




photo by Jim Dillon




Sophomore Alex Arovin accepts the team’s Most Valuable Player Award from Golden Eagle tennis coach Keny Doyle, during the team’s post-season picnic at the tennis courts.




Sticky situation...

photo by Tony Marable

Known for his bat more than for his glove, Golden Eagle outfielder Brandon Thomasson flashes the leather against Morehead State in the second round of the OVC Baseball Tournament, coming down with a leaping catch at the wall, just inches from the Aunt Jemima sign in right field. Tech defeated the Eagle, 14-2 to advance to the semifinals.


Unlimited may june 2014  
Unlimited may june 2014