Congratulations Frank Talotta

August 15, 2017Frank Talotta will have a new answer for a question he has been asked many times over the past 25 years or so. Talotta was a large part of the early establishment of the Coastal Carolina baseball program on the national scene in the early 1980s, as he helped the Chanticleers reach the NAIA College World Series in three of his four years before being drafted in the 1983 Major League Baseball draft.

“Over the years people would ask me if I was in the hall of fame, and I would always say no, of course,” Talotta said. “The committee must have looked at the numbers and determined I deserved to be in there.

Talotta, 56, who has remained in the Myrtle Beach area since earning a business degree from CCU in 1984, is among the five former CCU student-athletes who comprise the school’s George F. “Buddy” Sasser Athletic Hall of Fame Class of 2017. He is joined by Josh Norman (football 2008-11), Anthony Meo (baseball 2009-11), David Anderson (baseball 2007-09) and Marie Matrka (women’s tennis 2001-05).

The induction ceremony is planned for Nov. 11 and inductees will be recognized that day during a home football game against Troy.

The Sasser athletics hall of fame is housed in the Adkins Fieldhouse at Brooks Stadium. The first class was inducted in 1991.

Talotta, has owned the office furniture business Talotta Contract Interiors on S.C. 544 in the Socastee area for the past 34 years, is the third player from the early 1980s baseball team that was coached by Larry Carr to be selected to the hall, joining Mickey Brantley and Mark Clemons. All three were selected within the first 20 rounds of the MLB draft. Talotta said seven of his CCU teammates were drafted.

Talotta, originally from Pittsburgh, ranks fourth in CCU history with a .390 career batting average and sixth in triples. In 107 games he recorded 24 home runs, 118 RBI and 53 stolen bases. In his senior season in 1983 he led CCU in at-bats (210) and RBI (68) while hitting .395 with 83 hits, 14 homers and 67 runs scored.

He was voted to the 1982 NAIA World Series All-Tournament Team after batting .417 in the tournament., and was drafted in the 20th round (503rd overall) by the Houston Astros. He batted .240 with Auburn Astros in single-A short season and was among the Astros final cuts in spring training in 1984.

Talotta was the first player from CCU to be selected to play in the prestigious summer Cape Cod League, and he lived with the family of Carl Yastrzemski.

Talotta was a teammate of current CCU coach Gary Gilmore in 1980, and like many former Chants baseball players, Talotta attended the College World Series last year when Coastal won the NCAA Division I national championship.

“I’m elated about the whole thing,” Talotta said. “I’m humbled and honored and surprised but I think I deserve it. I’m just proud to be associated with it all.”