Todd Helton named as Tennessean of the Year

July 17th, 2014

NASHVILLE, TN—On May 17th at the Renaissance Hotel Nashville, the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame will be celebrating the induction of a great class including: Former Titan Eddie George, Basketball Great Popeye Jones, and Hope Hines, but the list of  recipients  keeps growing.  The Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame announced today the names of the 2014 Tennessean of the year and the Honorees to be recognized at their annual Induction Banquet.

Tennessean of the Year

  • Todd Helton, a Knoxville Tennessee native, and University of Tennessee standout was a first-round Draft pick to the Colorado Rockies’ in 1995 and it’s where he retired at the end of last season. In Denver Helton became not only a star player, but a fan favorite.  With an old-school mentality he finished out a run of more than 2,200 games with the same franchise where he holds the Rockies records for hits (2,519), home runs (369),doubles (592),walks (1,335)runs scored (1,401), games played(2,247) and total bases(4,292)

Female Amateur Athletes of the Year

  • Ebony Rowe holds 15 school records at Middle Tennessee State University, including breaking the school’s 26-year old all-time scoring record. She is currently ranked in the four different NCAA Top 25 categories.  This season, the senior forward has earned Conference USA Player of the Week four times and Tennessee Sports Writers Association Player of the Week six times and the NCAA Women’s Basketball Player of the Week. She also garnered Gulf Coast Showcase MVP accolades after boasting 22.6 points and 12 rebounds in three games.


  • University of Tennessee at Martin has two women’s basketball players being honored.
    • Senior guard Jasmine Newsome has achieved All Mid-Major Player of the Year, All-American first team honors, All-OVC first team selection, Defensive Player of the Year and OVC Tournament most valuable player for the second straight season.
    • Senior Heather Butler was named to the Mid-Major All-American second team., OVC Player of the Year, All-OVC first team and OVC All-Tournament team selections, ranking ninth in the nation in scoring. Her 2,846 career points rank 18th on the NCAA’s all-time scoring list. Butler has scored in double figures every game of her career, for 128 consecutive games. Making this the longest active streak in the NCAA (the last streak was of 74 games). She tied the program record for points in a single game with 44 points on two occasions.


  • University of Tennessee’s Ivy Renfroe.  Renfroe ranks second in the all-time UT records with 158 appearances in the circle and ranks third all-time in games started at 104. Her 97 career wins for the Lady Vols trails only former Lady Vol and current Chicago Bandit pitcher, Monica Abbott. Renfroe’s 28 career shutouts for the Lady Vols. Renfroe finished her career at Tennessee with 737 strikeouts over 749.2 total innings.  Renfroe finished her senior season with a 22-5 record. She threw 12 complete games and six shutouts. She finished the season with a 1.77 ERA and struck out 148. She earned both the Louisville Slugger/NFCA National Player of the Week and USA Softball National Collegiate Player of the Week in the same week (3/4/13 – 3/10/13).


Male Amateur Athletes of the Year

  • In 2013, for the third straight year in a row, Rich Froning is the biggest name in CrossFit. He’s once again been crowned the “Fittest Man on Earth” — the title given to the man who beats competitors at the highly-rigorous and heavily-competitive CrossFit Games.  Rich is a natural born athlete, having starred in baseball at Cookeville High School from 2001-2005. He was a two-time all-district and all-region second baseman, along with numerous other team awards. After graduating, Rich opted out of two college baseball scholarships to work at the Cookeville Fire Department for over three years while he attended Tennessee Technological University.

Significant Historical Achievement

  • Tennessee State University Men’s Basketball 1957-1959 . In 1957, the unseeded Tennessee State University Tigers had four upsets on the way to their first National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Tournament Finals. Their most important victory was over the #7 seed Southeastern Oklahoma State in a 19-point blowout (92-73), giving the school and Coach John McLendon its first of three consecutive NAIA Championships.  With the win, Tennessee State became the first historically black institution to win a collegiate basketball national championship. This accomplishment was unprecedented at the time. For more information on the upcoming Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame Induction Banquet go to or you can contact the Hall directly at or 615.242.4750.

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