Archives for January 2017

Bacon Night Thursday at Tucker Coliseum

Arkansas Tech University fans should arrive hungry when they come out to Tucker Coliseum to cheer on the Golden Suns and the Wonder Boys in Great American Conference basketball against Southern Nazarene University on Thursday, Feb. 2.

The Department of Athletics will prepare and serve 100 pounds of Petit Jean bacon on a first-come, first-served basis beginning at 5:30 p.m. Thursday as part of its 2017 Bacon Night promotion.

Tickets ($5 adults/$3 students and senior citizens) will be available at the door. Those with a valid Arkansas Tech identification card will be admitted free of charge.

#23 Arkansas Tech Golden Suns (14-3, 10-3 GAC) vs. SNU Crimson Storm (9-7, 6-6 GAC)
When: Thursday, Feb. 2, 5:30 p.m.

Where: Tucker Coliseum, Russellville
Radio/Internet: KCJC 102.3 FM/
Series: Tech leads 11-3

About the Golden Suns: Arkansas Tech leads the GAC in field goal percentage (.442), and the Golden Suns rank No. 2 in the conference in scoring defense (61.8 points allowed per game), field goal percentage defense (.353), 3-point field goal percentage (.340) and rebound margin (+7.5 per game). Tech defeated Southern Nazarene 89-86 in Bethany, Okla., on Dec. 3. Anissa Pounds made the go-ahead 3-pointer for the Suns with 1:01 remaining.

About the Crimson Storm: Southern Nazarene senior guard Abby Boyd ranks third in the GAC in scoring (15.1 points per game) and fourth in the league in 3-point field goal percentage (.379). She made 5-of-6 3-point tries and scored a career-high 34 points in the Crimson Storm’s home loss to Arkansas Tech earlier this season. Southern Nazarene has won six of its eight games since the calendar flipped to 2017.

Arkansas Tech Wonder Boys (13-4, 9-4 GAC) vs. SNU Crimson Storm (10-8, 7-5 GAC)
When: Thursday, Feb. 2, 7:30 p.m.

Where: Tucker Coliseum, Russellville
Radio/Internet: KCJC 102.3 FM/
Series: Tech leads 4-3

About the Wonder Boys: Arkansas Tech has won four consecutive games, and the Wonder Boys are 10-2 over their last 12 contests. Tech is averaging 92.5 points per game during its current winning streak. The Wonder Boys average 11.9 made 3-pointers per game, most in the GAC and fifth-most in all of NCAA Division II. Tech’s offense is directed by two of the top five assist men in the conference: senior guard Justin Graham (3rd, 5.2 assists per game) and sophomore guard Freddy Lee (5th, 4.9 assists per game).

About the Crimson Storm: Southern Nazarene forced Arkansas Tech into 19 turnovers and finished with a 25-10 edge in points off turnovers on its way to an 80-73 win over the Wonder Boys in Bethany, Okla., on Dec. 3. The Crimson Storm ranks among the GAC leaders in steals (2nd, 7.8 per game), field goal percentage defense (3rd, .408) and rebound margin (3rd, +3.8 per game). SNU is 2-6 away from home this season. The home team has won the last six meetings between the Wonder Boys and the Crimson Storm.

Black History Month Events Begin Wednesday

Arkansas Tech University will participate in Black History Month 2017 by hosting a series of events spotlighting the many and varied contributions that African Americans have made and continue to make to the United States of America.

For more information, contact the Arkansas Tech Department of Diversity and Inclusion at (479) 880-4358 or

Wednesday, Feb. 1
Kickoff Ceremony
Hindsman Tower
Noon-1 p.m.
A brief ceremony will be followed by a balloon release to celebrate the beginning of Black History Month 2017. 

Wednesday, Feb. 8
Black and Brown Excellence
Doc Bryan Student Services Center room 242
6-8 p.m.
Recognizing faculty and staff who work to aid in student success.

Thursday, Feb. 9
Fashion Show
Doc’s Place at Doc Bryan Student Services Center
6-8 p.m.
A “Project Runway” themed show that will feature students modeling African diaspora-style clothing ranging from the 1980s through today.

Friday, Feb. 10
90s Hip Hop Party
W.O. Young Building Ballroom
9 p.m.-1 a.m.
Students are invited to dance in 1990s attire for this dance party.

Monday, Feb. 13
AASA Speed Dating
Doc Bryan Student Services Center room 242
6-9 p.m.
Meet new people in this fun, fast-paced environment, sponsored by the African American Student Association. 

Tuesday, Feb. 21
LGBT Safe Zone Ally Training
Doc Bryan Student Services Center room 242
6-9 p.m.
Learn to provide support and to create environments that are safe, welcoming and inclusive for members of the Tech community.

Thursday, Feb. 23
Tech Talks Diversity and Inclusion Series
Baswell Techionery
12:30-1:30 p.m.
Join in this safe space discussion concerning an important topic of the moment. 

Sunday, Feb. 26
Soul Food Sunday
W.O. Young Building Ballroom
3-5 p.m.
Local churches and friends of Arkansas Tech will provide food as members of the Tech community share the tradition of Sunday dinner. 

Tuesday, Feb. 28
Black History Month Keynote Speaker: Sheyann Webb-Christburg
Doc Bryan Student Services Center Lecture Hall
7-9 p.m.
During an address entitled “My Childhood Experiences with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.: Growing Up in the Selma Civil Rights Movement,” Ms. Webb-Christburg will share her recollections from childhood, including participating in the first attempted Selma to Montgomery march. 

Cooper, Hern, Hudgens Chosen for Top Honor

Three individuals have been selected to receive the highest honor Arkansas Tech University may bestow upon an individual in 2017.

Hal Cooper of Russellville (photographed, top left), Kevin Hern of Tulsa, Okla. (photographed, top right) and George T. Hudgens of Silver Spring, Md. (photographed, bottom middle) will be inducted into the ATU Hall of Distinction during spring commencement ceremonies at John E. Tucker Coliseum in Russellville on Saturday, May 13.

Hern and Hudgens will enter under the Distinguished Alumnus category. Cooper will be inducted under the Distinguished Service category.

“For more than a half-century, selection to the Hall of Distinction has symbolized the pinnacle of achievement as a member of the Arkansas Tech University community,” said Mike Hutchison, vice president for advancement at ATU. “These three individuals have distinguished themselves in their respective fields and brought honor to our university. We look forward to the opportunity to recognize them during spring commencement weekend.”

Cooper was director of bands at Arkansas Tech from 1979-2011. He is one of five individuals to hold that title during the more than century-long tradition of instrumental music at Tech. Cooper was named Arkansas Bandmaster of the Year in 1988, and he achieved membership in the American Bandmaster Association in 1992.

Hern, a 1986 graduate of Arkansas Tech, is a private investor and managing partner at Firstrike Management Group. He has been involved in the McDonald’s franchise system for 30 years. Hern has the franchise for 10 McDonald’s restaurants in the Tulsa, Okla., area that employ more than 400 individuals.

Hudgens, who became the first African American graduate in Arkansas Tech history in 1963, went on to a distinguished 29-year military career that included serving as a commander in Vietnam and leading counterterrorism efforts as inspections branch chief in the U.S. Army Office of the Inspector General at the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. He retired at the rank of Colonel following a career that included serving as Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces Inaugural Committee for former president George W. Bush and as Deputy Director of the Inaugural Committee for former president William Jefferson Clinton.

Established in 1964, the Arkansas Tech Hall of Distinction recognizes the accomplishments of Arkansas Tech alumni and friends in five categories: Distinguished Alumnus/Alumna, Distinguished Alumni Service, Outstanding Young Alumnus/Alumna, Distinction in Intercollegiate Athletics and Distinguished Service (non-alumnus).

Nominations for the Arkansas Tech Hall of Distinction may be made by any graduate of Arkansas Tech, any current or former member of the faculty or administration of Tech, any currently enrolled full-time student at Tech or any member of the Hall of Distinction. Nominations may not be made by a family member of the nominee. The nomination deadline is Oct. 1 of each year.

No incumbent member of the Arkansas Tech Board of Trustees, faculty, staff or administration is eligible for nomination for any category of the Hall of Distinction.

For more information about nominating an individual for the Arkansas Tech Hall of Distinction, visit, call (479) 968-0242 or send e-mail to

Trombone Day at Arkansas Tech University

The Arkansas Tech University Department of Music will celebrate the trombone during an afternoon and evening filled with master classes, rehearsals and a recital at Witherspoon Hall on Monday, Jan. 30.

The recital will begin at 7:30 p.m. in Witherspoon Auditorium under the direction of Dr. Daniel A. Belongia, associate professor of music and director of bands at Arkansas Tech. Admission will be free and open to the public.

David Garcia, principal trombonist of the Zurich Opera Orchestra, and Zach Bond, bass trombone artist faculty at Yong Siew Toh Conservatory of Singapore, will teach and perform during Monday’s event.

Additional guest artists will include the following performers and teachers:

  • Michael Underwood, Arkansas Symphony Orchestra/University of Arkansas Little Rock
  • Justin Isenhour, Arkansas Symphony Orchestra/Ouachita Baptist University
  • Justin Cook, University of Central Arkansas
  • Bruce Faske, Arkansas State University
  • Jamie Lipton, Henderson State University
  • Jason Hausback, Missouri State University
  • Dewayne Dove, Russellville High School
  • Zach Whitworth, Dardanelle High School
  • Ryan Matejek, Danville High School

Max Thein of Thein Fine Brass Instruments will be on hand with trombones for all to test.

Learn more about the ATU Department of Music.

Wonder Boys Earn Another Comeback Win

For a second consecutive Saturday, the comeback Wonder Boys broke the hearts of a hometown crowd.

Arkansas Tech University rallied from a 19-point deficit to defeat Southwestern Oklahoma State University 98-87 in Great American Conference basketball at the Pioneer Cellular Event Center in Weatherford, Okla.

It came one week after the Wonder Boys (13-4 overall, 9-4 GAC) came back from 23 points down to earn a road win over the University of Arkansas-Monticello.

“Our defense got us in the hole today,” said Arkansas Tech head coach Chad Kline. “We got down 19 points and stopped switching screens, and on the offensive end we started attacking the rim more. Once we got to the rim, they had to collapse and we could kick it out for horse shots. We can score in bunches. I kept telling the guys we haven’t hit our run yet. We just had to get some stops and rebounds. Credit the players. They never panic.”

Southwestern Oklahoma State led 46-27 at the 4:24 mark of the first half. The Wonder Boys called timeout, regrouped and outscored the Bulldogs 20-5 over a span of seven minutes to cut their deficit to 51-47 with 17:12 remaining in the second half.

Arkansas Tech took its first lead of the day at the 9:33 mark of the second half, moving in front 67-66 on a pair of Bennie Lufile free throws.

Grant Prusator kept it going by knocking down three consecutive 3-pointers over a span of less than a minute to stake the Wonder Boys to a 76-66 advantage with 7:54 left. It was the culmination of a 16-0 Tech run.

SWOSU pulled within 82-78 with 4:25 to go, but back-to-back baskets by Lufile followed by an Alex Brown 3-pointer extended the Wonder Boys’ margin to 89-79 with two minutes showing.

Arkansas Tech put away its 10th win in its last 12 games by making 9-of-11 free throws over the final 1:25.

Prusator finished with 23 points. He was 7-of-13 from 3-point range. Lufile and Brown notched 15 points apiece. Montrell Williams contributed 13 points and Freddy Lee had 12 points and nine assists.

Markeise Champion scored a game-high 24 points for the Bulldogs (5-13, 2-10).

The Wonder Boys will welcome Southern Nazarene University to Tucker Coliseum in Russellville for a 7:30 p.m. GAC contest on Thursday, Feb. 2.