Derek James Inducted into SLIAC Hall of Fame
December 10, 2012
Head golf coach and assistant men’s and women’s basketball coach Derek James has been inducted into the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Hall of Fame, class of 2013.
A dual-sports athlete in basketball and golf from 1999-2003, James is one of the most decorated athletes in MacMurray College history.
During his Highlander basketball career, James set the following records: seventh in all- time scoring, with 1,280 points; first in all-time 3-point field goals made with 228; 10th in all-time assists; sixth in all-time steals; and 12th in all-time blocked shots.
James was also recognized as the basketball team’s most valuable player in the 2002-2003 season. He was named to the Second Team All SLIAC 2000-2001 and First Team All SLIAC in both 2001-02 and 2002-2003. James was a member of the 2000-01 basketball team that earned a berth in the NCAA Division III National Tournament, the only men’s basketball team at MacMurray ever to qualify.
James also holds several individual season records for the Highlanders: ninth in 3-point field goal percentage in 2000-2001, with 42 percent; second, third and eighth in single season 3-point field goals attempted; second, third and eighth in 3-point field goals made; third in free throws made; eighth in single season points, with 506, 10th in scoring average in 2002-2003 (20.2 ppg), and third in steals. James won the Vic Sheppard Award in 2003 for the outstanding MacMurray male student-athlete for his efforts as a Highlander.
On the golf course, James averaged a 78 throughout his golf career and received Second Team All SLIAC honors in 2002. During his senior season in 2003, he won four tournaments with an average score of 74.5 for the season, earning him First Team All SLIAC honors and SLIAC Player of the Year. James also won the SLIAC Tournament Championship his senior year.
“I am very pleased and thankful to represent MacMurray College and the community of Jacksonville with this tremendous honor”, said James. “This achievement wouldn’t be possible without the support of our faculty/staff at MacMurray, the Jacksonville community and by the grace of God. This has been an overall surreal moment in my life.”
After graduating from MacMurray, James successfully continued on in the community. In 2005, he was the winner of the Jacksonville Golf Championship. He also participated on the Gateway PGA Tour from 2008-2010 and competed in the Illinois Open and several U.S. Open qualifiers.
James received an elementary education degree from MacMurray in 2003. He taught for two years in the Bluffs, IL, School District. In addition to coaching at MacMurray, he is currently a teaching pro at Northridge Hills Golf Course in Jacksonville. James was inducted to the MacMurray College Athletic Hall of Fame in 2009.