Basketball and Baseball, 1973-76
Inducted March 5, 1988
Andy Newton was a three-year starter and letterman for the SMSU basketball Bears from 1973 to 1976 and also played baseball for two seasons for the Bears. Playing for Coach Bill Thomas, Springfield native Newton earned a starting berth as a sophomore and his play helped key the drive of the Cinderella Bears of that year to an MIAA championship, and NCAA regional title and a NCAA Division II national runnerup finish as the Bears defeated St. Joseph’s and New Orleans before losing to Morgan State in the national finals in Evansville, Ind. Newton averaged 11.4 as a sophomore and then came back to score in double figured again his junior year as SMSU posted a .500 record. Newton, who had been selected all-conference honorable mention as a sophomore and junior, gained all-league first team selection as a senior as he led the Bears in scoring with a 17.9 average. He led the Bears to a 15-11 season record and served as the SMSU team captain. His three-year, 82-game career saw him tally 1,079 points, currently 11th best on the SMSU career list. More than a decade after the end of his career, he still ranks second in career assists with 444 and his junior year total of 170, a record at the time, is still the fifth best single season assist total. Newton set what still stands as the SMSU single game record for assists with 21 in 1975 against Kentucky Wesleyan and he has two other games on the top ten assist list. Newton lettered in baseball in 1974 and 1975 for SMSU and was a member of Bear teams which were MIAA runnerup clubs both of those years. He played into the 1976 season when elbow problems ended his career as a starting pitcher. He wound up with an overall 3-2 mound mark in baseball for SMSU.