Adams Named to ASHOF
Former Piggott Mohawk and Arkansas Razorback standout, Gary Adams, has been selected for induction into the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame. Adams reports that he was informed of the honor late last week, although the announcement was not made official until Sunday. His election was made possible by strong support from his home town of Piggott, as a number of local residents secured membership in effort to gain the honor.
Adams played quarterback for the undefeated Piggott Mohawk teams his junior and senior year. Starting as a sophomore, midway through the 1962 season, the Mohawks never lost a game after he was named the starting quarterback. Doubling as defensive back, Adams once intercepted five passes in the 1963 game against Marked Tree.
Following high school, he was an All-State selection and was selected to play quarterback for the East Team in the 1965 High School All Star Game, where he made the game-winning touchdown pass to future Razorback standout, Gordon McNulty.
In 1965, Adams worked-out at quarterback and returned punts during his freshman season at the University of Arkansas. In 1966 he moved to defense, and lettered as a Razorback from 1966 through 1968. He was also named as a first team All-Southwest Conference standout his sophomore, junior and senior seasons.
As a sophomore, Adams led the Southwest Conference in interceptions with a total of seven in just that single season. His record is still tied for second overall for interceptions in a single season in the history of Razorback football. Two of those interceptions were in the fourth quarter against Texas, helping to seal a 12-7 Razorback victory over the Longhorns. He was named the Outstanding Sophomore Defensive Player of the Year in the Southwest Conference and also was named Honorable Mention All-American.
During his senior season in 1968, Adams was named defensive team captain of the Razorbacks, ending his time as a Hog with 13 career interceptions. At the time it stood as a school record, and today it remains the second highest career total in the University of Arkansas history, only surpassed by Steve Atwater’s 14 picks several years later.
During his career as a Razorback, the teams Adams played on compiled a 22-8-1 record; tied for the 1968 Southwest Conference title; and, defeated No. 4 Georgia in the 1969 Sugar Bowl. In 1969, Adams was selected to play in the All-American Bowl in Tampa, Fla.; and making the most of the exposure he was later drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in the 12th round of the 1969 NFL draft.
In the years since his playing career ended, he was named to the 1960’s All-Decade Team by the Arkansas Razorbacks, and was inducted into the University of Arkansas Sports Hall of Honor in 2011.
Gary served as the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame president in 2004, though he was never nominated for inclusion until this year.
In an effort to gain him the recognition, fellow Mohawk alum Joe Cole provided membership applications for local residents, and encouraged them to participate in the voting process. This past weekend he was informed by Adams that the effort had paid off.
“Joe, I want to thank you for all your help and support up at Piggott in getting me votes for the ASHOF. Your efforts worked,” he explained. “Tomorrow it will be officially announced that I, along with eight others, will be inducted March 29 into the ASHOF.”
Adams informed Cole that he received the most votes of anyone in the Senior Division, which gained him an automatic spot in the hall. Normally, five from the regular list are named along with four from the senior list.
“It would not have happened without the Piggott support,” Adams concluded. “I was told that I received lots of votes from Piggott.”