Inducted February 16, 2002
Winston Garland was the centerpiece of the first two SMS Division I postseason basketball teams as he led the Bears to the quarterfinals of the 1986 National Invitation Tournament and the second round of the 1987 NCAA tourney. A native of Gary, Ind. who came to SMS after two seasons at Southeastern (Iowa) Community College, Garland, was the Bears’ leading scorer twice, averaging 16.5 points as a junior and 21.2 as a senior. The Bears of coach Charlie Spoonhour were 24-8 in 1986 and a school record 28-6 in Garland’s senior year. A two-time all-conference choice and the Mid-Continent Player of the Year as a senior, Garland had a season school record 720 points in 1987, a mark which still stands. His 1,248 points remain the best total for any two-year player in SMS history. His .504 long-range shooting percentage in the first year for three-point field goals is also still an SMS record. The 1986-87 Bears went 13-1 for the league championship, and, with Garland as meet MVP, won the title of the conference tourney. SMS drew a bid to the NCAA Southeast Regional and the 13th-seeded Bears upset fourth-seeded Clemson in the first round before bowing by four points to Kansas. In 1986, SMS finished second in league play and got an NIT bid. SMS knocked off both Pittsburgh and Marquette in Hammons Student Center before dropping a one-point decision at Florida. Garland gained all-America honorable mention at SMS and went on to play six seasons in the National Basketball Association as a starter for the Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Clippers and Denver Nuggets.