Vanderbilt Athletics

2017 Hall of Fame Class inducted

Sept. 9, 2017

Vanderbilt welcomed its seventh class to the department's Hall of Fame Friday night inside the Multipurpose Facility.

The class is the first class to be inducted with every member having been a former Vanderbilt student-athlete. The inductees' careers spanned from 1939 to 2012 on the Vanderbilt campus with All-American careers, school and Southeastern Conference records set and numerous firsts. The group is full of philanthropists and success stories away from athletic competitions.

Check back later for a full photo gallery.

The 2017 Vanderbilt Hall of Fame Class
Earl Bennett
• Left VU as the all-time leading receiver in receptions (236) at Vanderbilt and the SEC.
• 2006 All-American and third round pick by the Chicago Bears.
• Played five seasons with the Bears.
• Enrolled at Vanderbilt in Learning, Diversity and Urban Studies graduate program.

Ally Carey
• Vanderbilt lacrosse program's only three-time, first-team All-American.
• Still holds three school records in ground balls, draw controls and single-season record with 80 draw controls.
• Has played for Team USA multiple times, including this past summer in 2017 Women's World Cup

Lew Conner
• Holds two degrees from Vanderbilt and a member of the men's golf team 1957-60.
• Has been vital to both golf programs as a lead donor on multiple projects, including the Conner Short Game Practice Facility.
• Noted philanthropist who has received awards for his generosity from both the Boys & Girls Club of Tennessee and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society.
• Established the Judge and Ashley Conner Golf Scholarship.

Joe Davis
• The only Vanderbilt men's tennis player to win three consecutive SEC men's singles titles from 1939-41.
• One of two inductees to play multiple varsity sports (also played basketball) joining Toby Wilt (football and golf)
• Served in World War II as a member of the Navy
• Was a successful businessman in the coal industry and established the Joe C. Davis Foundation, which has contributed over $80 million to non-profit organizations in the Nashville-area.

Nakia Davis
• The Southeastern Conference's first female African-American golfer.
• The Commodores' top finisher in six tournaments during her career, including the 1993 SEC Championship.
• Now a lawyer in New Orleans.

Matt Freije
• Left Vanderbilt as the school's all-time leading scorer, now third all-time behind fellow Hall of Famer Shan Foster and Jeff Taylor.
• An All-American in 2004 when he helped lead the Commodores to the Sweet 16.
• Played professional basketball for 10 years in the NBA and in Europe.

Josie Hahn Reynolds
• A four-time (twice indoor, twice outdoor) All-American and 2005 SEC Scholar Athlete of the Year.
• Still holds multiple school records in the high jump and the javelin and held five school records when she graduated.
• Won the 2004 SEC title in the heptathlon and was the first Commodore to earn a US Olympic Trials qualifying mark.

Teresa Lawrence Phillips
• The first-ever female African-American student-athlete in Vanderbilt history and first recipient of the Lady Commodore Athlete of the Year award.
• Director of Athletics at Tennessee State since 2002.
• The first-ever woman to serve as head coach of a Division I men's basketball team (Tennessee State).

Don Orr
• The quarterback for Vanderbilt's legendary 1955 Gator Bowl champion team.
• MVP of that Gator Bowl win over Auburn, scoring three TDs.
• Officiated NFL games for 25 years, including three Super Bowls (17, 24, 28).

Toby Wilt
• Played football for three seasons before joining the golf team as a senior (one of two multiple sport athletes in class -- Joe Davis, basketball and tennis).
• Has helped establish multiple scholarships at Vanderbilt including Toby S. Wilt scholarship that has been awarded to PGA players Luke List and Brandt Snedeker and Class of 1966 Football Scholarship in honor of his class' 50th reunion.
• Founder of the Golf Club of Tennessee and starter on hole No. 1 at Augusta National for The Masters.

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