Two-time Brownwood Lions state championship quarterback Jimmy Carmichael will be among the inductees at the 16th annual Big Country Athletic Hall of Fame Monday, May 1 at the Abilene Convention Center
Carmichael played quarterback at Brownwood from 1967-69 and was named to Texas Football magazine’s all-decade team of the 1960s. He passed for 3,585 yards and 48 touchdowns in his three-year career. As a senior, he led Brownwood to the Class 3A state title with a 34-16 win over West Columbia as he passed for 255 yards and three touchdowns. He threw for 2,308 yards and 28 touchdowns as a senior.
Carmichael was also a three-year letterman at Texas Tech and led the Red Raiders in passing as a sophomore. He was inducted as a founding member of the Gordon Wood Hall of Champions in 2000 and was inducted into the Texas High School Football Hall of Fame in 1992.
Joining Carmichael in the 2017 class are “Godfather of Professional Poker” Doyle Brunson, the late Larry Wartes, who won state championships as the football coach at Stamford in 1958 and 1959; Abilene High graduate Steve Lineweaver, who won four state titles as the head coach at Commerce and Euless Trinity; Mary Bolden-Washington, a state champion track star at Hamlin and the University of Texas; former Abilene High three-sport standout Trey Forkerway, who is now a regional scouting supervisor for the Chicago Cubs; and former Taylor County commissioner Jack Turner, who was a standout Golden Gloves flyweight boxer in his career.
The Legacy Award goes to the Parris family of Abilene. Rickey Parris was a four-time NAIA national champion in the pole vault at McMurry, and his wife Pug Parris has taught at McMurry for nearly 40 years, currently serving as McMurry’s Director of Inter-Disciplinary Studies. She is the former chair of the Kinesiology department. Their son Brad Parris is now the head track coach at McMurry. He is a five-time NCAA Division III pole vault national champion.
For the fourth straight year, the Hall of Fame board of directors will recognize two Bill Hart Memorial Legends Award recipients, who competed before 1950. To be recognized posthumously are Charles Norris Shira from Hamlin and Lon McMillin of Haskell. Shira played football at Texas A&M and West Point and later coached at Tennessee and Texas before becoming the head coach and athletic director at Mississippi State. He died at age 49 in 1976 of a cerebral hemorrhage, and the field house at Mississippi State is named for Shira. McMillin was a multi-sport standout in football and track at Haskell and won a state lightweight Golden Gloves title in 1938.
Tickets for the banquet are now on sale. Individual tickets are $65 each. Tables of 10 can be purchased for $800 and include the VIP reception prior to the banquet. Tickets can be purchased online at bigcountryhalloffame.org or by calling (325) 668-3685.