This topic contains 2 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by Kevin Kinder .
February 20, 2018 at 4:35 pm #52211
The South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame (SCAHOF) is pleased to announce the induction of Sammie Henson, head coach for the West Virginia University wrestling team, into the class of 2018.
“To be inducted into the South Carolina Hall of Fame is huge for me,” Henson explained. “I’m not even from South Carolina, and they have taken me in as one of their own. It’s not just about wrestling. It is about all sports, and that’s what makes it truly special. My time at Clemson was special. I had a great experience as a student-athlete, and I’m forever grateful. I just wish was my dad was here to see this. It’s a bittersweet moment for me, and he would’ve loved to seen this.”
Henson, a native of St. Charles, Missouri, is a former Clemson wrestler and two-time NCAA national champion, who also was inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2015.
Official release courtesy of Clemson Athletics:
Former two-time NCAA champion and Clemson wrestling great Sammie Henson will be inducted into the South Carolina Athletic Hall of Fame (SCAHOF), as announced by the organization on Monday.
The class of 2018 consists of Henson, Drew Meyer (USC baseball), Sam Goodwin (South Carolina State), Kenny Washington (UCLA and Beaufort, South Carolina), Ray Allen (NBA player, Hillcrest High and Dalzell, South Carolina), Casey Manning (USC basketball) and Kathleen Wilson (marathon swimmer and Charleston, South Carolina).
The seven individuals will be forever enshrined with the state’s highest athletic honor on May 14 at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center. Tickets (table of eight for $600) and program sponsorships are available by calling the SCAHOF office at 803-779-0905. The event, which includes a reception and dinner, begins at 5:30 p.m.
Henson is one of the most celebrated wrestlers in the history of the United States, as he is one of just a few wrestlers in USA history to earn three world medals. He started his collegiate wrestling career at Missouri, where he was a Big Eight champion and All-American in 1991. He then transferred to Clemson, where he became a two-time NCAA champion.
In 1992-93, Henson led Clemson to a 13th-place finish at the 1993 NCAA Tournament, winning a national title at 118 pounds. He became the first Tiger to go undefeated during a season, with an unspoiled 34-0 record.
Henson led the way again the following season, maintaining a perfect 37-0 record. He won another national title at 118 pounds, helping Clemson to a seventh-place showing at the 1994 NCAA Tournament – the team’s highest NCAA finish in program history. Henson finished with an impressive 37-0 record on the year, making his two-year Clemson career a perfect 71-0 mark.
He also was named Clemson’s Male Athlete of the Year in 1994 and was inducted into the Clemson Athletics Hall of Fame in 2000.
After Clemson, Henson became a world champion for Team USA at the World Wrestling Championships, in Tehran, Iran, which eventually led to him winning the John Smith Award for USA Wrestler of the Year. He earned a silver medal at the 2000 Olympic Games at 55 kg (121 lbs.) in Sydney, Australia, and won the bronze medal at the 2006 World Wrestling Championships at 35 years of age.
Internationally, Henson was a Junior World Greco-Roman champion, Senior World Freestyle champion, Senior World Freestyle bronze medalist and Olympic Freestyle silver medalist. He also won three USA Senior Freestyle titles and one in Greco-Roman.
As a coach, Henson has assisted numerous collegiate programs. He is currently the head coach at West Virginia University0February 21, 2018 at 9:38 am #52418
Congratulations Coach.0February 22, 2018 at 7:04 am #52536
WVU has shown improvement this year. Next step is a really difficult one — getting more guys competitive at a national level in more than a couple of weight classes. That’s very tough – we’re talking a limited pool of candidates here, and WVU is kind of on the fringe of eastern wrestling in terms of location, and way behind the midwest. There are enough WV\PA guys to help build, but will have to get some people from other areas too. No different than any other WVU sport.0
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