Sims selected for App State Hall of Fame

Donald Sims, left, was selected to be in the Appalachian State Athletics Hall of Fame.

BOONE — Appalachian State Athletics and the Former Athletes Association announced the four former athletes who are the newest members of the Appalachian State Athletics Hall of Fame.

They 45th Hall of Fame class of 2019 includes former wide receiver DaVon Fowlkes, former basketball player Donald Sims, former men’s tennis player Bobby Barbera and former wrestler Jim Whitmer.

They will be inducted in a ceremony on Aug. 31 before App State hosts East Tennessee State in the first football game of the 2019 season. They will also be recognized at the game.

Donald Sims

Sims, a Gaffney, S.C. native, is Appalachian State’s all-time career scoring leader with 2,185 points, including a school record 754 points in the 2009-10 season. Sims was the Southern Conference Player of the Year in 2009-10 after averaging 20.4 points per game for a 24-13 Mountaineers team that won the SoCon North Division championship by two games, reached the SoCon finals and advanced to the Collegeinsider.com semifinals.

Sims is the Appalachian State all-time single-season leader in made 3-pointers with 123 and in free throw percentage with .951. Sims made a team record nine 3-point baskets in a win over Chattanooga.

Sims also scored a career-high 44 points in a 78-68 win over Davidson in 2010 by making 13-of-19 shots from the field, 5-of-7 from 3-point range and 13-of-13 from the foul line.

DaVon Fowlkes

Fowlkes, a receiver for the App State football team from 2000-04, was the Southern Conference Male Athlete of the Year for the 2004-05 athletic season. He finished third in the Walter Payton Award, which is given to the top Football Championship Subdivision player, in 2004, when he led all FCS players in all-purpose yards with 2,313, which is second all-time in Southern Conference history.

Fowlkes holds the App State record for most receiving yards with 1,618, receptions with 103, single-game catches with 17, single season touchdowns with 14 and single-game receiving yards with 280.

Fowlkes is a three-time first-team All-Southern Conference player and was also named all-conference as a return specialist three seasons. He finished with a career total of 5,017 multi-purpose yards. He signed with the Indianapolis Colts out of App State, but was injured during the preseason and did not play in the regular season.

Bobby Barbera

Barbera was a four-time NAIA tournament participant from 1963-67. He helped App State win four Carolinas Conference and four National Association District 26 championships.

Barbera had a career regular-season winning percentage of .653 and a .733 winning percentage in doubles. A Goldsboro native, he helped the Mountaineers plate in the top 11 of the national tournament four times.

He was also a two-time Carolinas Conference singles champion and a three-time finalist. Barbera also led Appalachian State to place in the top-16 of the national tournament three times. A team captain as a senior, Barbera was a member of the District 16 championship doubles team his junior season.

Barbera also played one season of men’s soccer at Appalachian State.

Jim Whitmer

Whitmer, who wrestled at App State from 1963-67, was a two-time NAIA All-American at 137 pounds. He placed sixth nationally at 137 pounds in 1966 and fourth in 1967.

Whitmer posted an overall record of 32-3-1, including an 8-1-1 record in 1967. He is one of three two-time All-American wrestlers from App State. The other two are Bruce Schlegal and Mark Fee.

After graduating from App State, Whitmer founded the wrestling program at Enka High School in 1970 and was inducted into the National Wrestling Hall of Fame as a coach after compiling a 351-80 record.

Whitmer also received the Laurel Wreath Award, North Carolina’s highest honor for athletic achievement, in 2018.

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