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25TH ANNUAL ALBANY SPORTS HALL OF FAME: Brock surprised, elated by HOF nod

Photo by Danny Aller

Photo by Danny Aller

ALBANY -- Missie Milton Brock has coached nearly every sport.

It's partly because she was an outstanding athlete and could pass her knowledge on and partly because she married a former athletic director who always needed her to coach something.

Brock could do it all, so when the Albany Sports Hall of Fame committee came calling, she was probably the only one surprised by the induction.

In fact, she didn't think it was for her at all.

"I listened to the message and I thought (HOF president Bob Fowler) was telling me that my husband was going into the Albany Hall of Fame. I didn't listen to the message very well."

That's understandable, considering she married Brent Brock, another Albany native who played football at Florida State and is now a position coach at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, Tenn., where the Brocks now live.

Missie Brock, who was returning from the Blue Raiders spring game Saturday when reached by The Herald, said her husband had to clear things up for her: It was her, not him, going into the Hall.

"He had flowers, a card and a gift for me before I made it home," she said. "He was extremely proud and tickled for me. I was pretty surprised (too). It's pretty amazing. It's very humbling, especially this many years out. (I'm) just very honored because there have been many great athletes to come out of Albany, Georgia."

Missie Brock made her name known between 1975-1978 as a basketball star at Albany High, where she was an all-region and all-tournament selection. She was also co-captain of the cheerleading squad and a member of the tennis team.

"Missie was an outstanding basketball player and she was a superlative, a leader in her class at Albany High," Albany Sports Hall of Fame President Bob Fowler said.

Missie went on to play basketball and softball at Valdosta State College from 1978 to 1982, where she received the Carol Chason Award, the Best Offensive Player Award and the Miss Lady Blazer Award in basketball.

She went on to coach and teach at eight different schools in Georgia and now Tennessee, leading young athletes in basketball, softball, cross country, track, gymnastics and cheerleading.

"A lot of people are in one place forever, and that's a nice thing," she said. "Being able to move like we did, we had the opportunity to meet so many different kinds of young people. We've made great friends everywhere we've been. A lot of people might look at it like a negative thing, but it's been a wonderful experience."

As head softball coach at Colquitt County High, Missie was awarded the 1987 Region 1-AAAA Coach of the Year. At each stop in Georgia -- Thomasville, Moultrie, Sylvester, Fitzgerald, Macon, Jefferson -- her husband, as athletic director at most schools, always needed a coach.

"When you're married to an athletic director, there were times you could almost see the look on his face," Missie said. "I'd say, 'What, honey?' And he'd say, 'I need a softball coach, I need a basketball cheerleader coach.'

"I'd tell him I'm resigning at the end of the season, but I'll do it."

In addition to doing all that, Missie Brock volunteered for the Special Olympics from 1981-2002 and is now at Whitworth-Buchanan Middle School in Tennessee as the department head for Special Education.

"It's given me a chance to really help students who really need a lot of help," Missie said of her special education work. "It's like it's been my little calling."

And now the Albany Sports HOF has called on her for an athletic and coaching career of excellence. Not too bad for a "coach's wife," as she describes herself today.