Plans announced for Georgia High School Football Hall of Fame

The Georgia High School Football Hall of Fame won’t have a physical structure initially, but Rosenberg said he intends to find a public space to display hall-of-fame plaques in the meantime.

The hall of fame will take nominations, but the selection process and eligibility requirements won’t be ironed out until the initial board meetings.

The board will be co-chaired by Dave Hunter, the retired former Brookwood athletic director and coach, and Rusty Mansell, a recruiting analyst for 247Sports and a former Georgia high school football player.

Board members will include GHSA executive director Robin Hines, former high school coaches Lynn Hunnicutt, Ed Pilcher, Jimmy Dorsey, Raymond “Tweet” Williams and Earl Etheridge, current coaches Maurice Freeman, Tim McFarlin, Bryan Lamar and Eric Parker, county athletic directors Jasper Jewell and Ed Shaddix, GHSA media relations director Steve Figueroa, McEachern principal Regina Montgomery, Atlanta businessman Randy Beal and sports media members Bill Hartman, Buck Belue, Craig Sager Jr. and Matt Stewart.

The reason the Georgia hall of fame is for players only, Rosenberg said, is that coaches already have a hall of fame in Dalton. Three of Rosenberg’s board members – Hunter, Pilcher and Dorsey – are members of the Georgia Athletic Coaches Association Hall of Fame.

To be settled is how much to weigh a player’s high school career vs. his entire career.

There are nine former Georgia high school football players in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the most recent being Sandy Creek’s Calvin Johnson, inducted last year. Four Heisman Trophy winners, including Johnson County’s Herschel Walker and Westlake’s Cam Newton, played high school football in Georgia.

There also are Georgia high school football legends such as Commerce’s Monte Williams, whose post-high school career wasn’t especially outstanding but whose Georgia career rushing record has stood more than 20 years.

Rosenberg said the tentative plan is to break the state into regions and the state’s history into eras, with board members assigned to them so that each region and era get fair representation in the hall of fame.

“The key here will be making sure we do a good job with the entire state and don’t focus on just the names we all know,” Rosenberg said. “An example is one of the buckets we will pick from is the African-American schools before the GHSA was fully integrated. Their history before integration is really incredible but not well known. What I learned from the Baseball Hall of Fame is to make sure to uncover every stone and don’t assume anything. Our board is very diverse and has a big job in front of them, but they all are excited about it.”

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