LITTLE ROCK, Ark. - Joe Adams was named the winner of the first Star of Tomorrow Award by the Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame on Friday evening during the Hall of Fame's Class of 2012 induction banquet at Verizon Arena in North Little Rock.
Adams, who completed his four-year career as a wide receiver/punt returner for the Razorbacks in January, left Arkansas ranking second on the school's all-time career receptions list with 164. He also ranked fourth in school history with 2,410 receiving yards and with seven 100-yard receiving games and was tied for fourth with 17 receiving touchdowns. Adams recorded five punt return touchdowns, which is tied for the third-highest career total in SEC history. His career average of 15.83 yards per punt return ranked second on Arkansas' all-time list.
Adams was a consensus All-American and was named SEC Special Teams Player of the Year in 2011. Adams also was recognized as the first-team AP All-SEC all-purpose player and earned first-team All-SEC honors at all-purpose and punt return spots on the Coaches All-SEC team. He was one of four finalists for the Paul Hornung Award after finishing the season with 54 receptions for 652 yards and three touchdowns and 19 punt returns for 321 yards and four touchdowns. His punt return touchdown total led the NCAA and tied for the single-season SEC record. He was the only player in the country with rushing, receiving and multiple punt return touchdowns in 2011. Adams also led the SEC and ranked second in the NCAA with an average of 16.89 yards per punt return and ranked fourth in the SEC with 4.2 receptions per game and eighth in the SEC with 50.2 receiving yards per game. He tied an SEC record in the season opener against Missouri State with two punt return touchdowns.
The Star of Tomorrow Award is given annually to the top college athlete from either an Arkansas school or an out-of-state school if that athlete is from Arkansas. Athletes from all intercollegiate sports - male and female - are eligible for the award.
The Hall of Fame Class of 2012 consisted of former Razorback basketball player Lee Mayberry, former Oaklawn Park track announcer Terry Wallace, former Newport High School head football coach Bill Keedy, former Razorback basketball player U.S. Reed, former Razorback football player "Light Horse" Harry Jones, Little Rock native and former Oklahoma State University head football coach Pat Jones, former Forrest City star athlete Elmer "B" Lindsey, former college coach and NFL scout Bob Ford of Wynne, former Southern Arkansas University women's basketball coach Margaret Downing, former University of Central Arkansas head football and track coach Raymond Bright and 1892 Kentucky Derby winning jockey Alonzo "Lonnie" Clayton.
The Hall of Fame also inducted the 1994 national championship basketball team from the University of Arkansas, the second time in its history for the Hall of Fame to induct a team. The 1964 national championship Razorback football team was inducted in 2010.