Inaugural A-Sun Hall of Fame class has strong Mercer feel

When Andrea Congreaves decided that she wanted to play college basketball in the United States, she was recruited by programs like Kansas and North Carolina, just to name a couple.

But Congreaves, who is from England, felt she had much work to do to develop as a basketball player and was not quite ready for a larger program. So when Mercer women’s head coach Ed Nixon came calling, Congreaves was sold on going to a smaller program, where she would get much more one on one attention.

And that decision paid off as Congreaves became the most decorated women’s basketball player in A-Sun history. She led the nation in scoring twice and was an All-American in 1993.

On Tuesday night in Tampa, Florida, she will be one of six members of the first A-Sun Hall of Fame class.

“It was an absolute shock when I found out that I was going to be a member of the Atlantic Sun’s first Hall of Fame class,” said Congreaves, who scored 2,796 points while at Mercer. “I felt the same way when I was named to the Mercer Hall of Fame. I still really can’t believe it. When Tiffany Swoffard (former Mercer assistant coach) sent me a message and said she needed information on me because I had been elected, I really thought she was joking with me.”

Congreaves still has fond memories of the four years she spent in Macon.

“I remember Porter Gym, where we played our home games, and a lot of the other girls would talk about how small it was, but it was really what I was used to growing up,” said Congreaves, who played professionally for 13 years. “I loved it because our fans would make it so loud. Then Lea Henry came in (as head coach) after my freshman year, and we were able to have some success. There really is not anywhere else I would have rather spent my college years because Macon was such a wonderful place for me.”

Other members of the A-Sun’s inaugural class are Corey Kluber (Stetson, baseball), Chris Sale (Florida Gulf Coast, baseball), Hal Sutton (Centenary, golf), Monique Tubbs (Jacksonville, track and field) and Glenn Wilkes Sr. (basketball player at Mercer and coach at Stetson). It marks the eighth hall of fame that Wilkes has been elected to, including Mercer’s.

“I had a friend tell me that when you have been named to a lot of hall of fames, it just means you are really old,” said Wilkes, who won 552 games in his coaching career, with most of them being at A-Sun member Stetson. “I am honored every time I am inducted because all of them have been a part of my life.”

Wilkes is still very active with basketball, working at Nike camps and Michael Jordan’s camps.

“I retired from coaching, but I am still very active with basketball, and that’s why I have never gotten bored,” Wilkes said. “The game of basketball has always been very good to me, and it all started at Mercer when they gave me a chance to play the game I loved.”