Gross and Lane to enter Hall of Fame

by Sports Editor Mike Ezekiel

Two UNA legends received an induction to the 2016 Gulf South Conference Hall of Fame class April 7.

Former UNA All-American quarterback and former offensive coordinator Cody Gross and legendary baseball coach Mike Lane, along with three other inductees, will officially join the third GSC Hall of Fame class June 1 in the Hilton at Pensacola Beach, Florida.

Gross and Lane join four former UNA standouts as inductees, as 1995 Harlon Hill winner Ronald McKinnon, former basketball coach and athletic director Bill Jones and volleyball standouts Ronda Price Brinley and Rachel Price Bell.

Gross led the Lions to three consecutive national championships fro 1993-95 and held a 41-2 record as a starting quarterback, which is among the best all-time records on all NCAA levels.

The Rogersville native adds a fourth Hall of Fame honor to his repertoire, receiving inductions into the Division II Hall of Fame, UNA Atheltic Hall of Fame and the Lauderdale County Sports Hall of Fame.

After his playing career in 1996, Gross started coaching, eventually finding his way to the offensive coordinator job at UNA from 2012-15, helping the Lions win three GSC Championships. Gross left UNA in 2016 where he is the head coach at Athens High School.

Lane enters the Hall of Fame as the winningest coach in the school’s and conference’s history with 25 years at UNA’s helm. Lane compiled a 571-156-4 record as UNA’s head skipper. Lane is among the winningest coaches in Division II history in total wins and winning percentage.

Lane, who has UNA’s baseball field named after him, produced multiple MLB talents, including Josh Willingham and Sergio Romo, among others.

Lane is also a member of the 2009 UNA Athletic Hall of Fame class, receiving his induction after his retirement.

The 2016 class also includes former West Georgia women’s basketball player Velisa Levett Caldwell, former Delta State women’s basketball coach Lloyd Clark and former Alabama-Huntsville softball player Melanie Carter.