No. 30 Tree Rollins, Hawks, 1977-88
Bio: A first-round pick, Rollins played 814 games in a Hawks’ uniform, second only to Dominique Wilkins. He remains in the top five in franchise history in offensive, defensive and total rebounds. Rollins leads the Hawks in career blocks with 2,283, 883 more than second-place Josh Smith. The Cordele native finished in the top three in the NBA in blocked shots six different times.
Why we picked him: Rollins’ number stands out mostly because he’s one of the most tenured players in franchise history. Rollins never stood out as a scorer – he averaged more rebounds than points in seven of his 11 seasons in Atlanta – but he was a regular presence and one of the better defensive players in the Eastern Conference during his tenure.
Others we considered:
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Billy Bennett, Georgia, 2000-03
Only four guys played in more games at Georgia than Bennett, and Blair Walsh is the only UGA kicker with more games played. He finished his career with 29 NCAA, SEC and UGA records, including the NCAA all-time leader in field goals and the SEC’s top career scorer. He remains the NCAA record holder for field goals in a career and is now second to Walsh in career scoring in the SEC.
Orlando Cepeda, Braves, 1969-72
Cepeda hit 74 homers and knocked in 252 runs during his four years with the Braves. Cepeda made 11 all-star games and won an MVP, but none of those honors came in Atlanta.
Jeff Ford, Georgia Tech, 1969-71Ford set the program record with nine interceptions in 1969 and he is second in Tech history with 14 career interceptions.
Will Muschamp, Georgia, 1991-94
Muschamp, the current head football coach at Florida, rose from walk-on to senior captain with the Bulldogs.
Mike Stanton, Braves, 1989-95
Stanton was an integral piece of the Braves’ bullpen for seven seasons, posting a 2.88 ERA in 74 appearances in 1991 and picking up 27 saves in 1993.
No. 31 Greg Maddux, Braves, 1993-2003
Bio: Maddux came to Atlanta fresh off winning a Cy Young Award with the Chicago Cubs. He would win three more consecutive Cy Young Awards after joining the Braves, cementing his legacy as one of the greatest pitchers in history. He won 15 or more games in all 11 seasons with the Braves. He made six all-star teams and won 10 Gold Glove Awards in Atlanta. He led the league in ERA four different times and finished third in the MVP voting in 1995. Maddux finished his 23-year career with 355 wins (eighth most in baseball history) and a 3.16 ERA.
Why we picked him: While William Andrews is one of the great Falcons of all-time, Maddux is one of the greatest players in baseball history, and he spent 11 of those years in Atlanta. He formed one of the greatest pitching staffs in baseball history alongside John Smoltz and Tom Glavine.
Others we considered:
William Andrews, Falcons, 1979-86
Andrews had quite the impactful start to his pro career with 1,023 yards as a rookie. He became one of the top running backs in the NFL quickly, rushing for 1,308 yards in 1980 and 1,301 yards in 1981. His best season came a year later when he rushed for 1,567 yards and seven touchdowns, making his fourth consecutive Pro Bowl. Andrews’ career effectively ended with a knee injury in 1984. He finished his career with 5,986 yards and 30 touchdowns.
Mike Fisher, Georgia, 1978-80
Fisher, a former walk-on, started at cornerback on the 1980 national championship team.
Drew Hill, Georgia Tech, 1975-78
Hill became a standout receiver in the NFL, but he made his name as a returner at Georgia Tech. He still holds the program record for career kick return yards, career and single-season kick return touchdowns and kick return average. He finished with 1,080 receiving yards as well, but he’s third in program history in yards per catch. He’s seventh in program history in all-purpose yards and second on that list among receivers behind Kelly Campbell. He made two Pro Bowls and later spent two years with the Atlanta Falcons.
Gani Lawal, Georgia Tech, 2007-10
The Norcross native started 91 games over three seasons, averaging a career-best 15.1 points as a sophomore. He added 13.1 points as a junior before declaring for the NBA draft. He was a two-time All-ACC pick and finished 12th in program history in rebounds.
Chris Rebhan, Georgia, 1989-90
Rebhan led Georgia to a national title in 1990, earning Most Outstanding Player honors in the College World Series and beating Mike Mussina and Stanford twice. Rebhan was named to the College World Series all-decade team for the 1990s.
Jeff Sanchez, Georgia, 1982-84
Sanchez had nine interceptions in 1982 and finished fifth in program history with 13 career interceptions. He made two All-SEC teams and earned UPI and Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) All-America honors in 1984.
Jacob Tanis, Mercer, 2009-11
Tanis set the single-season record for hits (104) – Chesny Young broke this record in 2013 – and doubles (25) and stands second in home runs (22) and RBI (88). He holds Mercer career records for batting average (.363) and slugging. He earned All-America honors in 2011.
Jason Terry, Hawks, 1999-2004
Terry averaged 16.8 points or more in four of his five seasons with the Hawks. He maxed out at 19.7 points in his second season in the league.
No. 32 Jamal Anderson, Falcons, 1994-2001
Bio: Anderson had four 1,000 seasons as a Falcons, but his career was defined by his All-Pro season during the Falcons push to the Super Bowl. He rushed for 1,846 yards and 14 touchdowns on a then-NFL record 410 carries. He rushed for 5,336 yards and 34 touchdowns and added 1,645 receiving yards and seven touchdowns.
Why we picked him: Anderson gets the difficult pick over Dan Roundfield due to his prominence on the greatest team in Falcons history. The former Utah standout was undoubtedly the face of the offense during the Falcons run to the Super Bowl in 1998. He may not have invented the “Dirty Bird” dance, but he certainly became the guy most identifiable with the dance.
Others we considered:
Steve Bedrosian, Braves, 1981-85, 93-95
Bedrosian started his career with the Braves as a reliable reliever, although he did start 37 games in 1985. He had three seasons with 11 or more saves. He returned to Atlanta in 1993 and pitched in 124 games as a reliever.
Bill Bridges, Hawks, 1968-72
Bridges played six seasons for the St. Louis Hawks and remained with franchise for three-and-a-half years after the move to Atlanta. He averaged more than 10 points every year in Atlanta, highlighted by 14.8 points in 1970-71. He made the all-star game in 1969-70.
David Carter, Morehouse, 2009-12
Carter was named SIAC Player of the Year after rushing for a league-best 1,495 yards as a junior. Carter broke program records for single-game, single-season and career rushing marks.
Larry Dean, Valdosta State, 2007-10
Dean broke Jessie Tuggle’s career tackles record at Valdosta State and was named Gulf South Conference and Division II Defensive Player of the Year in 2010.
Ray Easterling, Falcons, 1972-79
Easterling played 83 games in a Falcons’ uniform, retiring with 13 interceptions as a safety.
Mike Hampton, Braves, 2003-08
Hampton won 35 games over two full seasons and parts of two other seasons during an injury-plagued run with the Braves. He won a Gold Glove in 2003.
Jon Koncak, Hawks, 1985-95
Koncak isn’t remembered fondly by many Hawks fans who were upset with the giant contract he received. He did, however, play 717 games in Atlanta, seventh most in franchise history.
Christian Laettner, Hawks, 1995-98
Laettner never quite lived up the hype following his historic career at Duke and inclusion on the Dream Team in 1992. But he did have some of his best years in Atlanta, particularly during the 1996-97 season when he averaged 18.1 points and earned his only All-Star selection. He averaged more than 13 points in all three seasons in Atlanta.
D.A. Layne, Georgia, 1998-2001
Layne was a SEC All-Freshman pick and earned two All-SEC honors, landing on the AP first team in 2001. Layne is 10th in program history in scoring. He averaged 15.9 points over his career.
Charlie Liebrandt, Braves, 1990-92
Three of Liebrandt’s best seasons coincided with the Braves’ ascension. He won 15 games in both 1991 and 1992 and posted a 3.35 ERA during three years in Atlanta. His Braves’ tenure is marred somewhat by struggles in the World Series in 1991 and 1992.
Katrina McClain, Georgia, 1983-87
One of the greatest women’s basketball players in history, McClain was named national player of the year in 1987. She’s second in program history in points and rebounds. McClain, whose jersey is retired, won two Olympic gold medals and one bronze. She was inducted into the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame in 2006 and the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 2012. The two-time All-American was named USA Basketball’s Female Athlete of the Year in 1988 and 1992. McClain capped off her impressive career by leading Team USA in rebounding on the way to a gold medal in 1996.
Dan Roundfield, Hawks, 1978-84
One of the best defensive players in Hawks history, Roundfield ranks in the top five in franchise history in offensive and defensive rebounds and blocks. He also averaged a double-double and more than 17 points per game in each of his seasons with the Hawks. He made three consecutive All-Star games with Atlanta and landed on the NBA All-Defensive team three different times.
Musa Smith, Georgia, 2000-02
Smith had one of the better rushing seasons in UGA history when he went for 1,324 yards and eight touchdowns in 2002. Only Herschel Walker, Garrison Hearst, Knowshon Moreno and Todd Gurley rushed for more yards in a single season.
Mack Strong, Georgia, 1989-92
Strong started 29 games at fullback, never seeing the bulk of the workload while playing in the same backfield as Garrison Hearst. He finished with 826 rushing yards and nine touchdowns. Strong made two Pro Bowls with the Seattle Seahawks and was a member of the Seahawks 35th Anniversary Team after 15 years with the franchise.
Lars Tate, Georgia, 1984-87
Tate rushed for 954 yards and 16 touchdowns in 1986 and followed that with 1,016 yards and 14 touchdowns in 1987. He finished his career with 3,017 yards and 36 touchdowns. Tate is third in program history in rushing yards behind Herschel Walker and Garrison Hearst and second in touchdowns behind Walker.
Joe Ward, Georgia, 1984-86
Ward was a coaches first-team All-SEC pick in 1986 and averaged 11.2 points per game in his career.
Matt Wieters, Georgia Tech, 2005-07
Wieters was ACC Freshman of the Year and a three-time All-ACC pick. He made consecutive Baseball America All-America teams. He hit .359 for his career and remains in the top 10 in program history in RBI and saves. He was MVP of the Atlanta Regional in 2006 and hit four home runs in the Regional and Super-Regional to lead the Yellow Jackets to the College World Series. He was a first-round draft pick and has made two All-Star teams with the Baltimore Orioles.
No. 33 Michael Turner, Falcons, 2008-12
Bio: Turner had one of the better runs in franchise history, rushing for 1,300 or more yards in three of his five seasons with the team. He earned All-Pro honors in 2008 when he rushed for 1,699 yards and 17 touchdowns and added seasons of 1,371 and 1,340 yards. He scored 10 touchdowns or more in each of his five seasons in Atlanta. Turner, who made two Pro Bowl appearances, finished with 6,081 yards (second in franchise history) and a franchise-record 60 touchdowns.
Why we picked him: Avery comes up about two more solid years away from being the pick, but it’s hard to go against one of the top rushers in Falcons’ history. Turner was a workhorse for a Falcons offense that has helped ensure five consecutive winning seasons and a 56-24 record in that span.
Others we considered:
Steve Avery, Braves, 1990-96
Avery was an integral piece of the Braves rotation in the early days of their championship run. He started 20 or more games for seven straight years. He won 18 games twice (1991 and 1993) and had a sub-3.40 ERA for three straight years beginning in 1991. He made the All-Star team in 1993 and finished sixth in the Cy Young voting in 1991. He pitched 16 1/3 scoreless innings in the 1991 NLCS to win MVP honors.
Cannonball Butler, Falcons, 1968-71
Butler rushed for 590 yards or more in three straight seasons beginning in 1969. He earned Pro Bowl honors in 1969 after rushing for 655 yards.
Terrell Davis, Georgia, 1992-94
Davis had a solid career at Georgia with his best year coming with 824 yards and five touchdowns in 1993. Davis went on to have one of the best three-year stretches in NFL history, peaking with 2,008 yards and 21 touchdowns to help lead the Broncos to a pair of Super Bowl wins. He was Super Bowl MVP in 1997 and NFL MVP in 2008.
Sammy Drummer, Georgia Tech, 1977-79
Drummer averaged 21.0 and 23.7 points per game during his two seasons in Atlanta. He earned first-team All-Metro Conference honors in 1979. Kenny Anderson is the only Tech player to score more points in two seasons than Drummer.
Daniel Emerson, Mercer, 2008-10
Emerson holds the school record for single-season rebounds, and he’s second in career rebounds per game. He has six of the seven best rebounding games in Hawkins Arena history. Emerson was named state college basketball player of the year by the Atlanta Tipoff Club in 2010.
Duane Ferrell, Georgia Tech/Hawks, 1984-88 (Tech), 1988-94 (Hawks)
Ferrell scored 1,818 points over four seasons as a starter. He averaged 18.3 points per game over his final two seasons at Tech. He was a two-time All-ACC second team pick and the ACC Rookie of the Year in 1985. Ferrell went into the Georgia Tech Athletics Hall of Fame in 1995. He’s ninth in Tech history in scoring and one of 16 Yellow Jackets with 1,000 career points and 500 rebounds. Ferrell would wear No. 33 for six seasons with the Hawks, scoring in double figures in two straight seasons beginning in 1991-92.
Jason Jones, Kennesaw State, 1996-99
Jones was a two-time All-American and the 1998 Division II Player of the Year.
Brian Jordan, Braves, 1999-2001, 2005-06
Jordan made a much bigger impact on the diamond, making the All-Star team during his first season in Atlanta while hitting 23 home runs and knocking in 115 runs. He hit .275 with 71 homers and 323 RBI in five seasons with the Braves. He played all of his NFL games with the Falcons, intercepting five passes in three seasons while wearing No. 40.
Alec Kessler, Georgia, 1986-90
Kessler was a two-time All-SEC coaches first-team selection. He has two of the top six scoring seasons in UGA history. He ranks second only to Litterial Green in scoring in program history.
Lavon Mercer, Georgia, 1977-80
Mercer became the 14th player in program history to score 1,000 career points. He led the Bulldogs in rebounding three times and averaged 10.5 points or more in each of his final three seasons.
Erric Pegram, Falcons, 1991-94
Pegram had one standout season in Atlanta, rushing for 1,185 yards in 1993.
Rich Poythress, Georgia, 2007-09
Poythress was a Louisville Slugger All-American as a junior after leading the Bulldogs with a .376 average and 25 home runs and a program-record 86 RBI. He finished second in UGA history in RBI and led the Bulldogs to two College World Series appearances.
Trey Thompkins, Georgia, 2008-11
Thompkins made two All-SEC coaches first teams. He finished 13th in program history in scoring and his 15.7 point average for his career places him 12th in UGA history.
Odell Thurman, Georgia, 2003-04
The Monticello native finished sixth in program history with 29.5 tackles for loss, a total led by 18.5 tackles for loss in 2003. The linebacker was a two-time coaches All-SEC first-team pick.
Jason Varitek, Georgia Tech, 1991-94
Perhaps the greatest baseball player in Tech history, Varitek led the Yellow Jackets to the World Series championship game in 1994. The catcher was a three-time consensus All-American. He became the only Tech player to win the Golden Spikes Award as the outstanding amateur baseball player in 1994. He added the Dick Howser Award as the best college player the same year and was named national player of the year by three different publications. Varitek is the only player in Tech history to have their number retired. He holds program records for career hits, runs, doubles, home runs and RBI. He went on to win two World Series and make three All-Star teams with the Boston Red Sox.
No. 34 Herschel Walker, Georgia, 1980-82
Bio: Walker’s story is all so familiar by now. He surged into the starting lineup as a freshman and led the Bulldogs to three SEC titles, three Sugar Bowl appearances and the 1980 national championship. He was a three-time consensus All-American – the only player in state history to achieve that distinction. He held 10 NCAA rushing records, 15 SEC record and 30 program records at the end of his career. CBS named Walker the offensive player of the century in 1999, and he landed on Walter Camp’s All-Century First Team. He went into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1999. Walker still has the three biggest rushing yardage seasons in UGA history. He rushed for 2,027 more yards than the next closest player in program history, and he has 13 more touchdowns than the next closest guy. He averaged 159.4 rushing yards per game in his career.
Why we picked him: Walker is the greatest college football player in state history and maybe the most recognizable athlete in Georgia alongside Hank Aaron. His inclusion in this list is a no-brainer.
Others we considered:
Ray Brown, Falcons, 1971-77
Brown had 31 interceptions in 94 games in Atlanta. Only Rolland Lawrence has more in franchise history.
Ray Buchanan, Falcons, 1997-2003
Buchanan started 99 games over seven years with the Falcons. He had 30 interceptions, tying him for third place in franchise history. The Louisville product made the Pro Bowl in 1998.
James Forrest, Georgia Tech, 1991-95
Forrest started 108 games for the Yellow Jackets, averaging 13 or more points in all four years in Atlanta. He averaged 19 or more points twice and made two All-ACC teams. He was ACC tournament MVP in 1993. Forrest is seventh in program history in scoring and rebounding. His biggest moment came as a freshman when he drained a 3-pointer at the buzzer to beat USC in the 1992 NCAA tournament.
Craig Heyward, Falcons, 1994-96
Heyward played just three seasons with the Falcons, but he did make the Pro Bowl in 1995 after rushing for 1,083 yards and six touchdowns.
Lenny Horton, Georgia Tech, 1976-80
Horton scored in double figures all four seasons at Georgia Tech, finishing with a career-best 17.2 points per game as a senior. He’s in the top 20 in scoring in program history and earned induction into the Georgia Tech Athletics Hall of Fame in 1985.
Kevin Millwood, Braves, 1997-2002
Millwood took over as a starter in 1998 and compiled the first of three seasons with more than 17 wins in a Braves’ uniform. He made the All-Star game in 1999 and went 75-46 with a 3.73 ERA in Atlanta.
Buzzy Rosenberg, Georgia, 1970-72
Rosenberg was a two-time All-SEC selection as a defensive back, but he was lethal as a punt return. He returned two punts for touchdowns in 1970 and replicated the feat in 1971 by returning two for touchdowns in a game against Oregon State.
Zane Smith, Braves, 1984-89
Smith never did get the most run support on some of the worst Braves teams of the 1980s. He lost double-digit games four straight years despite never having an ERA worse than 4.30. He did go 15-10 in 1987.
No. 35 Phil Niekro, Braves, 1966-83, 87
Bio: Niekro came to Atlanta when the Braves moved into Milwaukee and entered the starting rotation in 1967 and remained there for the next 16 years. “Knucksie” won more than 20 games three times and more than 15 in 11 different seasons. He picked up 268 of his 318 career wins in a Braves’ uniform. Niekro perfected the knuckeball which afforded the opportunity to pitch until he turned 48. His had a 3.20 career ERA with the Braves and made four of his All-Star games with the franchise. He also won five Gold Gloves in Atlanta. Niekro went into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1997 and his number is retired with the Braves.
Why we picked him: No other athlete in state history can match Niekro’s longevity and association with the state. He was a fixture in the Braves’ rotation for two decades.
Others we considered:
Keith Brooking, Georgia Tech, 1994-97
Brooking set the Tech record for career tackles with 467, 30 more than the next closest guy. He also had 25.5 tackles for loss and made an All-ACC team. Brooking peaked, however, during his outstanding pro career with the Atlanta Falcons.
Joe Burns, Georgia Tech, 1998-2001
Burns rushed for 2,634 yards (eighth in program history) and 31 touchdowns (fifth overall). The reliable running back is fourth in Tech history with 34 total touchdowns. He was an All-ACC pick in 2001.
Rennie Curran, Georgia, 2007-09
The undersized Curran is in the top 20 in UGA history in total tackles and solo tackles. He led the team in tackles in 2008 and 2009 and earned All-SEC honors in 2009.
Terry Fair, Georgia, 1979-83
Fair is eighth in program history with 1,492 points, and the Macon native is second in UGA history in total rebounds.
Alisa Goler, Georgia, 2008-11
One of the most decorated players in UGA softball history, Goler finished her college career with program records for home runs (58) and RBI (236). She made three All-America teams and three All-SEC first teams.
Gerald Harris, Georgia Southern, 1983-86
Harris was a big piece of the Eagles first two national titles. He rushed for 962 yards and 17 touchdowns in 1985 and 1,469 yards and 28 touchdowns in 1986. His 53 career touchdowns places him fourth in program history.
Verron Haynes, Georgia, 2000-01
The former walk-on broke out with 691 rushing yards and seven touchdowns in 2001. The fullback is most well known for his touchdown catch at Tennessee in 2001 that gave the Bulldogs their first win in Knoxville since 1980 and resulted in Larry Munson’s famous “Hobnail Boot” call.
Cedric Henderson, Georgia, 1984-85
Henderson was an All-SEC coaches pick and earned AP All-Freshman honors nationally in 1985. He averaged 15.5 points, the second-highest mark by a freshman in program history.
Angel McCoughtry, Atlanta Dream, 2009-current
The first overall pick in the 2009 WNBA draft, McCoughtry is the best player in franchise history. She was the WNBA Rookie of the Year in 2009, made an All-Star team in 2011 and won the WNBA scoring title in 2012. She also helped Team USA win a gold medal at the 2012 Olympics. She averaged 20 points or better in each of the past four seasons.
Mike Pritchard, Falcons, 1991-93
Pritchard didn’t live up to his first-round draft pick status, but he did catch at least 50 passes in each of his three seasons in Atlanta. He also had more than 600 receiving yards in all three years.
No. 36 Willie McClendon, Georgia, 1976-78
Bio: McClendon broke Frank Sinkwich’s 37-year-old rushing record with 1,312 yards in 1978, earning All-SEC honors in the process. He finished with 2,343 yards in three seasons at UGA.
Why we picked him: McWhorter had the better career than McClendon, but this is about which number is most identifiable with each guy, and there are few (if any) people still alive who watched McWhorter play.
Others we considered:
William Bell, Georgia Tech, 1989-93
Bell was the Yellow Jackets’ go-to back on their national championship run in 1990. He gained 1,050 yards from scrimmage with seven touchdowns. He ranks 12th in Tech history in rushing yards.
Eric Boulton, Thrashers, 2005-11
Boulton was an enforcer for the Thrashers, finishing in the top 10 in the NHL in penalty minutes in 2008-09.
Gary Matthews, Braves, 1977-80
Matthews played the best baseball of his career in Atlanta, finishing with 81 home runs, 291 RBI and a .288 average in four seasons. He hit .304 with 27 home runs and 90 RBI in 1979 on the way to playing in his only All-Star game.
Bob McWhorter, Georgia, 1910-13
The first All-American in UGA history, McWhorter was a four-time All-Southern halfback and served as a captain in football and baseball. He went into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1954, the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame in 1964 and the UGA Circle of Honor in 1996. He unofficially scored 61 touchdowns, which would put him 12 ahead of Herschel Walker for the program record.
Ken Reaves, Falcons, 1966-73
Reaves is fifth in franchise history with 29 interceptions and had three seasons with six or more interceptions. He made the Pro Bowl in 1969.
Joe Ross, Georgia Southern, 1987-90
Ross rushed for 1,730 yards and 16 touchdowns to lead the Eagles to the 1989 national title. He followed that up with 1,131 yards and 17 touchdowns on the way to the 1990 national title.
No. 37 Rick Camp, Braves, 1976-85
Bio: Camp spent most of his nine years with the Braves in the bullpen. He did go 11-13 with a 3.65 in 21 starts in 1982. He had 22 saves in 1979 and 17 in 1980 while posting a sub-2.00 ERA both seasons. He was best known for his game-tying home run in the 18th inning of a July 4 game against the New York Mets.
Why we picked him: Shelley’s selection to four Pro Bowls is impressive, but he did so as a special teams player avoiding the limelight. Conversely, Camp’s homer in the Mets game is a topic of discussion every year around July 4. He had a solid career overall for the Braves, but that one moment is one of the most famous in franchise history.
Others we considered:
Kendrell Bell, Georgia, 1999-2000
Bell had 153 tackles, seven sacks and four interceptions for the Bulldogs. He made his only Pro Bowl and was named AP NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2001 while playing with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Kenny Johnson, Falcons, 1980-86
Johnson started at safety for five seasons, intercepting 16 passes with the Falcons.
Mike Remlinger, Braves, 1999-2002, 2006
Remlinger was one of the best relievers in baseball in 1999, going 10-1 with a 2.37 ERA in 73 appearances. The former starter appeared in 70 or more games during his first stint with the Braves. He finished his Braves career with a 27-14 record and 16 saves with a 2.74 ERA. He made the All-Star team in 2002.
Elbert Shelley, Falcons, 1987-96
Shelley was never much of a factor as a defensive back, but he was one of the best special teams players in the NFL. He made four consecutive Pro Bowls beginning in 1992, putting him in a group with Roddy White, Andre Rison, Bill Fralic, William Andrews and Alge Crumpler as four-time Pro Bowlers.
No. 38 Tim Worley, Georgia, 1985-88
Bio: Worley made a name for himself with a huge 1988 season. He rushed for 1,216 yards and 17 touchdowns to earn consensus All-America honors. He led the SEC in rushing and touchdowns in 1988 before going in the first round of the 1989 NFL draft.
Why we picked him: Worley came in the middle of a NFL running back assembly line at UGA in the 80s, joining Lars Tate, Herschel Walker and Rodney Hampton as high draft picks. All of those guys, only Walker had a better single-season performance that Worley’s 1988 campaign.
Others we considered:
Greg McMichael, Braves, 1993-96, 2000
McMichael served as the Braves closer in 1993 and 1994, saving 40 games over two seasons. He had a 2.96 ERA in 280 appearances with the Braves.
Ron Reed, Braves, 1966-75
Reed spent eight years in the Braves’ rotation, winning 10 or more games five different times. He went 80-88 with a 3.74 ERA in Atlanta. He won a career-best 18 games in 1969, one year after making his only All-Star appearance.
No. 39 Durant Brooks, Georgia Tech, 2006-07
Bio: The Macon native obliterated the Tech record for punting average with a career mark of 45.3 yards per punt, which is nearly four yards more than second place. He averaged more than 45 yards per punt in both of his seasons at Tech, earning his consecutive All-ACC selections. Brooks was a finalist in 2006 for the Ray Guy Award as the nation’s top punter, but he would win the trophy in 2007.
Why we picked him: Brooks was only the third player in Tech history to win a national award, joining the elite company of Calvin Johnson (2006 Biletnikoff Award) and Joe Hamilton (1999 Davey O’Brien Award).
Others we considered:
Mike Castronis, Georgia, 1943-45
Castronis was a three-time All-SEC pick and earned All-America honors from INS as a tackle in 1945.
Tobias Enstrom, Thrashers, 2007-11
Enstrom holds the franchise record for single-season assists and points by a defenseman. He was one of two Thrashers to play in the All-Star game the year before the franchise left for Winnipeg.
Kevin McLee, Georgia, 1975-77McLee rushed for 1,058 yards and six touchdowns in 1976, becoming the first UGA player to rush for more than 1,000 yards in 35 years. He led the SEC in rushing touchdowns in 1975 with 10 and finished his career with 2,581 rushing yards and 21 touchdowns. McLee left Athens as the school’s all-time leading rusher, breaking Frank Sinkwich’s mark.
Jonny Venters, Braves, 2010-current
While his career has been brief, Venters has definitely made an impact in Atlanta. He has a 2.23 ERA and six saves in 230 games while serving as the primary set-up man for Craig Kimbrel. He pitched in a NL-high 85 games in 2011 while earning an All-Star selection.
Hoyt Wilhelm, Braves, 1969-71
Wilhelm had a rather short stop in Atlanta during his 21-year career. He saved 17 games and had a 3.10 ERA in 61 games with the Braves. The Hall of Famer made the All-Star team with the Braves in 1970.