April 18, 2005
Columbia, S.C. - South Carolina Assistant Athletic Director for Sports Medicine Dr. Rod Walters will be inducted into the National Athletic Trainers Association Hall of Fame at the organization's National Meeting and Clinical Symposium in Indianapolis on June 15. In his 16th year at South Carolina, Walters will receive the highest honor the NATA can bestow upon one of its members.
"This is a tremendous honor and I am grateful to the NATA for inducting me into its Hall of Fame," Walters said. "To be recognized like this is a testament to all the student-athletes, coaches and athletic trainers that I have worked with throughout my career."
Walters' Hall of Fame plaque will read: "For more than 25 years, Rod Walters has been devoted to providing quality health care to college student-athletes. From his early years in 1980 at Lenoir-Rhyne College, to his alma mater, Appalachian State in 1985, to his current position at the University of South Carolina in 1990, Walters has served as a mentor and role model to hundreds of Athletic Training students. A popular speaker and accomplished author, Walters has excelled as an administrator and has also been a noted consultant in the area of orthopaedic bracing."
In his current role at South Carolina, Walters coordinates the entire athletic training and rehabilitation programs for the Gamecocks. His primary responsibility is with the football team and the athletic program's sports medicine area. Walters also works with USC's Wellness Program.
Walters, who was elevated to an assistant athletic director in 1996, came to South Carolina from Appalachian State, where he had been head athletic trainer since 1985 and served in the dual capacity of assistant athletic director for the Mountaineers for three years.
A native of Fayetteville, N.C., Walters is a 1979 graduate of Appalachian State. He also holds a Master's degree from ASU and received his Doctoral degree in Physical Education from Middle Tennessee State.
Walters was head athletic trainer at Lenoir-Rhyne (N.C.) for five years before joining the staff at Appalachian State. He is a member of the National Athletic Trainers Association (NATA). He is also an instructor in the University of South Carolina's NATA approved Athletic Training curriculum and has had numerous articles published in Athletic Training, American Journal of Sports Medicine and The Physician and Sports Medicine periodicals. Walters served on the National Athletic Trainers Association Board of Directors from 1997-2003. He received the NATA's Most Distinguished Athletic Trainer Award at the annual meeting in June, 2003. Rod is also a member of the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine.
Walters serves on the Palmetto Chapter Board of Directors of the Juvenile Diabetes Association and is a member of the professional Board of Advisors for General Sports Turf Systems. He also was on the NATA's Appropriate Medical Care Task Force structuring health care for the future of college athletics.
Walters has been writing for www.coachesillustrated.com, Penn State Coach Joe Paterno's website, since 1999. The website covers a variety of college football topics and is widely used by coaches at all levels across the country. Walters is a featured columnist on the website on athletic training issues. He has been a featured speaker at various athletic training and sports medicine clinics at both the national and international levels. Walters also is a graduate of the Sports Management Institute and was a 1997 recipient of the Outstanding Young Man of America award.
Walters married the former Susan Ferguson on Dec. 11, 1999. He has two sons, Ryan and David, and Susan has two children, Bradley and Allison.
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