The Class of 2012

Joseph “Joe” Balius

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1959.
Joe was a four-year, four-sport letterman at BHS. He was the Big 8 scoring champion in 1958 and high school All-American in 1959 as quarterback at BHS. He pitched on the baseball team and played basketball and ran track.

Michael “Mickey” Bradley

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1966.
Mickey was the top player on his BHS golf team and became a Class A club professional in 1973. He served as assistant club pro at Broadwater and Hickory Hill and was head professional at Leflore County Country Club in Itta Bena, MS and Ellendale in Houma, LA. He became a PGA Tour rules official in 1989 and has worked hundreds of Tour events nationally and internationally. Mickey helped bring PGA Tour players to the Mississippi Coast after Katrina to help the relief effort. He paved the way for the Champions Tour golf tournament to find a home on the Coast.

Harold Breal

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1962.
Harold scored 24 touchdowns in junior high football and was the 100-yard dash state champion in 9th grade. He was the starting quarterback for BHS in 11th and 12th grade. He was named Most Athletic as a senior and was district champion in the shot put and discus. He signed a scholarship at Mississippi State, but had to surrender it after getting married. He transferred to then-Perkinston Junior College, where he played fullback and punted. He coached youth baseball and football, volunteered on the chain gang at BHS games and has been involved in local charities his entire life.

Steve Broussard

Graduated Notre Dame High School in 1967.
Steve was a four-sport star at Notre Dame, where he quarterbacked the football team under Head Coach Charles Hegwood. He was one of the best all-around athletes ever produced in Biloxi, and an outstanding amateur Golden Gloves boxer. He played college football at Marion Institute in Alabama and at USM. He signed a free agent contract with the Green Bay Packers and was a punter in the NFL.

Floyd Franks

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1967.
Floyd excelled as a receiver and runner under Head Coach John Williams at Biloxi High School. He led the Indians to a 9-1-1 record in 1966, including two bowl victories over the top teams in Louisiana and Florida. Signed a scholarship to Ole Miss, where he became the favorite receiving target of Archie Manning under Head Coach Johnny Vaught. Selected as one of the 55 greatest players in Ole Miss football history. Floyd had 13 receptions for 191 yards in the epic 33-32 Alabama victory over the Rebels in 1969. He is a member of the Ole Miss Hall of Fame.

James Franklin

Graduated Nichols High School in 1965.
James started his athletic career in Little League and Pony League baseball in Biloxi. He soon switched his interest to basketball and football. His senior basketball team won the Gulf Coast championship. He was a leading player on the Nichols football team and received several scholarship offers before deciding on Mississippi Valley State. He was a standout there, too. His nickname in high school and college was “Skeeter.” After graduating college, he joined the Army and later returned to teach and coach in Gulfport. He coached there for 20 years and later taught and coached in Batesville and Pass Christian.

Arthur Gill

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1963.
He was awarded the Outstanding Lineman Trophy in the 1962 Shrimp Bowl after leading BHS to an undefeated season in 1962. He also set a school record in the shot put at BHS. After graduation, he played at the University of Southern Mississippi, where he served as the Defensive Captain his senior year. He was drafted by the Green Bay Packers, but elected to pay for the Hamilton Tiger Cats in the Canadian Football League. He became a coach and teacher after his football career, and worked in several capacities promoting Coast recreation.

Marion Lorenzo Henley

Graduated Nichols High School in 1953.
Marion was an end and punter at Nichols, where he was selected Captain of the team his senior year. He signed a scholarship at Jackson State, where he also played end and punter, and was the 1956 Captain of the football team. He received a Masters degree in Administration and Supervision from Johns Hopkins University. After his playing career, he became one of the most successful high school football coaches in the state, fashioning an amazing 116-8-2 record at George Washington Carver in Picayune. His teams won a then-state record 64 straight games. He was inducted into the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame in 1993.

Randy Jenkins

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1971.
Randy has served the City of Biloxi for 24 years in the Parks & Recreation Department, helping improve youth athletics and recreational facilities for residents. He also has dedicated more than 28 years to youth athletic programs in Biloxi, serving as a volunteer coach and mentor to hundreds of children. Former president of the Biloxi Pee Wee Football League, Randy coached many of the city’s best teams and lost only one league game while staying undefeated in Mullet Bowl appearances. In baseball, he was a standout coach and administrator in Dixie Youth and Little League. He has contributed countless thousands of hours to Biloxi youth sports in a variety of coaching and supervisory positions. Randy was inducted into the Biloxi Little League Hall of Fame in 1999. His father C.D. Jenkins was enshrined into the Hall in 1985.

Frederick C. “Cliff” Kirkland, Jr.

Graduated Notre Dame High School in 1970.
He was a four-sport letterman at Notre Dame his junior and senior years. He was the baseball MVP his senior year and led the team in hitting. Cliff turned down a scholarship offer from Montevallo University in Alabama to play on scholarship for legendary coach Ken Farris at Mississippi Gulf Coast Junior College in Perkinston. He was a two-year starter there, named to Farris’s All-Time team, and then signed a scholarship to play at USM, where he was also a two-year starter, senior Captain and second-leading hitter behind New York Yankees No. 1 draft choice Wilson Plunkett. As a 16-year-old, he was the first Caucasian to play for the semi-pro Biloxi Dodgers, a remnant of the old Negro Leagues. After college, he became a sportswriter and editor at the Sun-Herald, where he won numerous state, regional and national writing awards covering local sports. He has also served his community for more than 30 years as a volunteer board member of various charitable organizations.

Ralph F. Lechner

Graduated Sacred Heart Academy in 1935.
Ralph was a standout fullback for the Galloping Gaels of Sacred Heart. He also was one of the stars of the first Shrimp Bowl game, which was played in 1934. He was a two-year football letterman at Sacred Heart and signed a scholarship to Mobile College. He also was one of the top softball players in Biloxi city leagues in the 1930s and early 1940s. He earned the Distinguished Player award from the Kiwanis Club in 1967 and received a proclamation from the City of Biloxi declaring June 29, 2008 as “Ralph
Lechner Day.”

Barry Lyons

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1978.
Barry was the youngest of a talented family of four boys, all of whom played college sports. His brother Kenny was inducted into the Biloxi Sports Hall of Fame in 1985. Barry was a two-sport star at BHS, where he was the Most Valuable Lineman in the 1977 Shrimp Bowl and the leading hitter on the baseball team, carrying the Indians to a Big 8 state championship his senior season. He earned a football scholarship to Delta State, where he became a breakout baseball star under Dave “Boo” Ferriss. At Delta State, he was selected All Gulf Conference four times, NCAA Academic All-American three times and NCAA All-American his senior year. Barry played three years of Minor League pro ball before joining the Major League New York Mets. He was a member of the 1986 World Champions. Barry was a catcher and pinch-hitter for the Mets, who drafted him in 1982. He also played for the Los Angeles Dodgers, the California Angels and the Chicago White Sox during his seven-year career. He has been a longtime volunteer coach and instructor in Biloxi youth baseball and continues to serve his hometown as a director of athletics at the Ray and John Kroc Community Center.

Rodney Mattina, Jr.

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1983.
Rodney was a three-year letterman in baseball and lettered one year in football at BHS. During his senior season, he hit .443 and compiled a pitching record of 8-3 with a 1.26 Earned Run Average. He had 105 strikeouts in 63 innings. He was selected to the Jackson Clarion-Ledger Mississippi High School All-Star baseball team in1983 and played in the Mississippi High School All-Star baseball game. He signed a scholarship with Ole Miss and was a standout player there for three seasons. His father, Rodney Mattina, Sr., and his grandfather A.J. were previously inducted into the Biloxi Sports Hall of Fame.

Melvin Moncrief

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1973.
He was an exceptional running back at BHS, setting several school records during his time there while leading the Indians on the football field. He was a multi-sport letterman, but his football prowess earned a scholarship offer from Southern Illinois University. He played there, but later transferred to Jackson State and became one of the Tigers’ leading rushers. He was invited as a free agent to NFL camps in Dallas, Seattle and Chicago. His cousin Larry Evans was previously inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Michael J. “Mike” Sekul

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1974.
Mike was the starting quarterback for Biloxi High School and was the Most Valuable Player in the 1973 Shrimp Bowl and the MVP in the Meineke Bowl in 1974. He played at Mississippi Gulf Coast Junior College for his brother George Sekul, leading the Bulldogs to a national junior college championship while earning First Team All-State accolades. He later signed with Southwest Oklahoma State and was a NAIA All-American quarterback there in 1976. His brother George was added to the Hall in 1985.

Lloyd Seymour, Jr.

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1967.
Lloyd was a leading member of various youth baseball state champion teams in Biloxi and a premier football player at Biloxi High, where he lettered for three years. He was a member of the Perkinston Junior College state champion football team in 1967 and a Second-Team junior college All-American in 1968. He then played at Mississippi College, where he was Best Defensive Player and Team Captain in 1970. He received his B.S. and M.Ed. from Mississippi College and began a highly successful career as a coach and teacher. Lloyd’s credited with starting the BHS girls softball program. He also has served his hometown as an assistant principal and high school principal.

Mark M. Seymour, Sr.

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1954.
Mark won 11 letters at BHS, where he was named Most Athletic his senior year and served on various class committees and clubs. He was a catcher in baseball, a guard in basketball, ran sprints in track, and played quarterback, halfback and fullback in football. He played baseball and football at Perkinston and accepted a football scholarship to Tulane University. He eventually received a B.S. in Engineering from Mississippi State University in 1959. He was always involved in his community from his days as a boy scout through youth sports coaching and charitable work for churches and social organizations. His engineering work was instrumental in converting the local casino industry from riverboats to land-based superstructures.

James Smith, Jr.

Graduated Alexander (Brookhaven) High School in 1958.
Coach Smith was a top track star and quarterback of the football team at Alexander. He also was President of his class and President of the Student Council. He received scholarship offers from most of the predominantly black universities in the South and decided to attend Alcorn State. He was the starting quarterback, ran track and was the President of his class from his sophomore year through his senior year. After college he became a teacher and coach, becoming head football coach at Nichols in Biloxi in 1965. His 1967 team defeated Carver of Picayune (ending a 64-game winning streak) for the only conference championship in Nichols history. Nichols then defeated Big 8 champion McComb in the Black Shrimp Bowl Classic, 27-23. He coached many outstanding players including Lionel Antoine, a Nichols standout who played for the Chicago Bears of the NFL and an inductee in the Biloxi Sports Hall of Fame. Coach Smith was even more successful as a teacher and administrator throughout his accomplished educational career.

T.J. Smith

Graduated Charleston High School in 1951.
T.J. was a legendary coach and administrator at Biloxi High School from 1956-1975. A Delta State graduate who earned a Masters in education at the University of Southern Mississippi, T.J. was one of the most well-liked and respected coaches in Biloxi history. He was a longtime assistant coach in football who helped the Indians to five Shrimp Bowl victories and a state football championship in 1962. He was the head tennis coach and won 55 regular season matches against only one loss while winning three District 8 championships. He also served as Principal at Fernwood Junior High and Biloxi High. He was well respected as a mentor to thousands of Biloxi athletes and students.

Bernard “Cuz” St. Amant

Attended Sacred Heart Academy in the late-1940s.
Although he attended the local Catholic school, Bernie adopted his father’s love of Biloxi High athletics early on. He used to attend Indians football games and stand by on the sidelines as his father worked on the volunteer chain gang. After high school, Bernie worked as a jockey in Chicago for awhile before joining the Army. He later returned to Biloxi and became one of the Indians’ biggest boosters. Like his father before him, he volunteered to serve on the chain gang at Biloxi Stadium for many years. He also worked for the Biloxi Recreation Department and was a longtime youth sports league volunteer. He has been one of Biloxi’s major boosters his entire life and his contribution have been recognized by the school district, the City of Biloxi and sports organizations.

Bruce Strong

Municipal Court Judge for the City of Biloxi.
Judge Strong has been one of the top volunteers and boosters for Biloxi High School sports for more than three decades. Bruce and his wife Annette have worked at the concession stand for virtually every major BHS athletic program since 1970. He has always donated his time, his money and his vocal support to BHS sports through the Booster Club, the Diamond Club, the Gridiron Club and the Hardwood Club. He has spent thousands of volunteer hours in support of BHS athletics.

Anthony Christopher “Chris” Taranto

Graduated Notre Dame High School in 1961.
Chris set and still holds the United States high school baseball records of nine no-hitters in one season, including six consecutive. His incredible record for the Rebels was the subject of numerous national media features, including Life Magazine, Sports Illustrated and The Sporting News. His lifetime statistics are: 183 innings pitched, 12 no-hitters, 26 wins, 2 losses, 335 strikeouts, 130 walks, 38 hits allowed and 30 runs allowed. His power pitching brought national attention and swarms of professional scouts to Biloxi every time he took the mound. He signed with the Houston Colt 45s at age 19.

Sal “Penue” Taranto

Attended Notre Dame High School in the mid-1950s.
Sal is one of the leading amateur boxing trainers and promoters in Mississippi Coast history. A boxing fan, he began helping train fighters four decades ago and was instrumental in the development of most of the Coast’s top amateur and professional boxers. He was involved with youth boxing, AAU, Golden Gloves and professional boxing. He tirelessly worked behind the scenes developing not only boxers, but an appreciation of the sport locally, regionally and nationally. He helped bring nationally televised bouts to Biloxi and was an officer of the Mississippi Boxing Commission.

Doug Thompson

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1994.
Doug was a two-sport star in football and baseball at BHS. He kicked a school record 51-yard field goal against Choctawhatchee, Florida. He’s most remembered as an outstanding pitcher in high school, junior college and Division I where he led LSU to a national championship in 1997. In high school, he was 20-4 with a 0.96 ERA and 240 strikeouts. At Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College he was 26-4 with a 0.83 ERA and 274 strikeouts. He was just as dominating at LSU with a 24-8 record and 282 strikeouts while becoming All-SEC and All-American. He played six years in the minor leagues with the Colorado Rockies organization. Since retiring from pro ball, he has regularly held instructional clinics for local players and helped support Biloxi athletics.

Elbert T. Trone

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1963.
Elbert was one of the state’s best high school football linemen and a co-captain of the Indians’ 1962 state championship team. He also threw the discus and shot put for the track team. He played in the 14th annual High School All-Star football game and signed a scholarship to play for the University of Southern Mississippi. After a stellar career at USM, he began a successful coaching career that started in Louisiana and included Fernwood Junior High in Biloxi and Ocean Springs High School. While at Ocean Springs he initiated a power lifting program and started a chapter of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. He has always been involved in his community through various charitable organizations.

James H. “Jimmy” Wallis, Jr.

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1965.
Jimmy was a member of the 1962 BHS state championship football team as a sophomore and later led the Indians as their starting quarterback in his junior and senior seasons. He was voted to the Second Team All-Big 8 team and played in the high school All-Star game after his senior year. He led the Indians to a state high school title in baseball in 1965 with a 12-0 pitching record. He signed a scholarship with Ole Miss and played football and baseball for the Rebels. As an amateur golfer, he has won the Sunkist Country Club Championship seven times, qualified for and played in the U.S. Senior Amateur in 2004 and won the Coast Senior Open the same year.

Michael “Mike” Wallis, Sr.

Graduated Biloxi High School in 1972.
Mike was a two-sport star at BHS, just like his brother and fellow 2012 Hall of Fame inductee Jimmy. Mike also excelled in youth athletics and was a quarterback for the football Indians. He was the team captain of the Indians his senior year and was named First Team All-Big 8. He also was a two-sport star in college after accepting a scholarship to Mississippi College, where he lettered for four years in football and three in baseball. He has coached in youth sports leagues in Biloxi and remains an active supporter of BHS athletics.

Shirley F. Windham

Graduated C.H. Boler High School in 1961.
Shirley carved out a solid reputation as one of Biloxi’s most successful coaches in youth and high school sports. She started her coaching career at Nichols High School in 1965 and later became the first black female coach at Biloxi High School. She won five consecutive state championships in girls basketball at Nichols. At Biloxi High, her track team won two district titles. She also re-established girls basketball at Biloxi, where it had been dormant for more than 20 years. Her 1977 teams won the Coastal Zone championship of the Big 8 Conference. She later transferred to elementary education, and began coaching recreational sports, including boys baseball. She was just as successful there, winning several championships. She has long been involved in her community and a mentor to area youth. She and her husband William are being inducted together this year into the Hall of Fame.

William E. Windham

Graduated from Boler High School in 1960.
William is recognized as one of the top sports referees on the Coast with more than 38 years of service. He was selected Referee of the Year in 2009 by the state association. He is retired after a lengthy career of coaching and volunteer work in a variety of sports. He was a Pee Wee and Pony League baseball coach and also was the manager of the semi-pro Biloxi Dodgers from 1970-1985, where he coached many of the city’s top baseball players. He coached in the Men’s Midnight Basketball League and helped organize Little League and Babe Ruth baseball teams. He’s been a selfless mentor to countless youngsters all over the Coast. He is being inducted this year along with his wife Shirley.

To see photos from the 2012 induction ceremony, click here.