SPARTANBURG, S.C. — Watauga High and Wofford College alum Eric Breitenstein — who is returning to his high school alma mater as a teacher and assistant football coach — will be among the 2020 class of inductees in the Southern Conference Hall of Fame.
The 2020 Southern Conference Hall of Fame class includes members of the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and Pro Football Hall of Fame, a 10-year Major League Baseball veteran, an NCAA pioneer and an NCAA record-holder. This year’s group of individuals represents the ninth class of inductees into the league’s Hall of Fame, highlighting 99 years of athletic success.
The 2020 inductees are: Lynne Agee (UNC Greensboro), Eric Breitenstein (Wofford), Terrell Owens (Chattanooga), Rod Thorn (West Virginia) and Wayne Tolleson (Western Carolina).
Student-athletes who competed for a minimum of two seasons in the Southern Conference were eligible for consideration, along with coaches and administrators who spent at least five years in the league.
A pool of more than 200 candidates from the conference’s current and former member institutions were nominated for consideration. The pool of former student-athletes, coaches and administrators was cut down to 40 individuals who comprised the final ballot. A voting panel of 20 media members and league administrators made the selection of the induction class.
Breitenstein, who was a running back for the Wofford football team from 2008 to 2012, was a first-team All-American in each of his final three seasons. He finished his career as Wofford’s career rushing leader with 5,734 yards, a mark that ranks second in SoCon history.
The fullback set the SoCon’s single-game rushing mark with 321 yards in a win over Elon in 2012 and surpassed his own single-season school record with 2,035 rushing yards that season, second-most in league history. Breitenstein, who first set the school record with 1,639 rushing yards in 2010, finished his career with 32 games with at least 100 yards rushing, including an NCAA-record-tying 11 straight in 2012.
He ranks fifth in SoCon history in career rushing yards per game (114.6) and all-purpose yards (5,843) and is second in career carries with 912. Breitenstein is also third in SoCon lore with six 200-yard rushing games, 65 touchdowns scored and 65 rushing touchdowns and is fifth in career scoring (390) and seventh in yards per carry (6.3).
A two-time SoCon Offensive Player of the Year and the 2012-13 SoCon Bob Waters Male Athlete of the Year, Breitenstein helped the Terriers reach the FCS playoffs and finish in the top 15 in the national rankings in each of his four full seasons. Breitenstein was inducted into Wofford’s Hall of Fame in 2017 and had his No. 7 jersey retired by the school in 2019.