Published Friday, January 25, 2013
From Staff Reports
A four-sport varsity athlete at Newnan High in the 1970s, Bob Tillman excelled at all of them, a major reason why he is among three new inductees in the Coweta Sports Hall of Fame Class of 2013.
Tillman, who lettered in football, track, basketball and wrestling at Newnan, will be joined by William “Billy” Parker and Ron Beaucham among the hall’s honorees at this year’s induction banquet scheduled for Feb. 9 at 6:30 p.m., at the Coweta Fairgrounds.
Tillman lettered in football under longtime Cougars head coach Max Bass from 1970-73 before going on to play at The Citadel under future Georgia Tech coach Bobby Ross.
Yet some of his biggest varsity accomplishments at Newnan High came on the track as a four-time Region 6-AAA high jump champion (1971-74). As a junior, he finished third at the Georgia Olympics, a year after being named the Most Improved Field athlete at Newnan as a sophomore.
He equally excelled on the football field, earning Most Improved honors as a sophomore in 1971. Two years later Tillman was named Newnan’s Most Valuable Senior and was named to the Georgia All-Star Game.
During his career, Tillman threw for 1,437 yards and 11 touchdowns while also finishing with 673 yards rushing and 18 scores. The Cougars compiled a win-loss record of 25-14-1 including a 7-2-1 mark in 1972.
Prior to high school, Tillman played on a 12-under boys basketball team in Newnan that captured both District 4 and State championships in 1968.
Tillman chose to pursue a football career in college, eventually switching from running back to defensive end during his final two years at The Citadel while recording 46 and 47 tackles, respectively.
He was part of a Bulldogs defense in 1976 that has been called the “best in Citadel history” having beaten Furman on the road, nationally-ranked Delaware, a tough Chattanooga team and Air Force.
The Bulldogs nearly pulled off an upset of Clemson the same year, losing 10-7.
A math major and computer science minor, Tillman excelled in the classroom while earning Dean’s List and Gold Star (3.7 GPA or higher) honors, graduating with a GPA of 3.29.
He went on to work at Hewlett-Packard for 34 years before retirement. Tillman remained active in his community with a resume that has included being a founding member of the Greater Atlanta/North Georgia Chapter of the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Tillman is also a church deacon, brotherhood director and Royal Ambassadors counselor. He has been a youth basketball and softball coach for the Smyrna Athletic Association and baseball coach with the Smyrna Little League and Jr. League Association.
Bob and wife, Debbie, have two children; daughter Ashley Wojciechowski, a flight attendant who graduated from Kennesaw State, and son, Ben, a student at The Citadel working on a double major in Business Administration and French.
Tickets are $25 and are available by calling Elizabeth Crain at 770-253-1235.