Legends of the Spring

Part of the Baylor “B” Association’s mission statement reads, “to recognize and express appreciation for the efforts and contributions of Baylor letterwinners,” and our Baylor Legends series is just one of the ways we strive to accomplish that mission. 

It’s already been a busy spring season for the “B” Association in hosting Legend recognitions for several of our spring sports, presenting awards to former athletes in Men’s and Women’s Basketball, Baseball, Softball, and Men’s and Women’s Tennis.  You can read more about these honorees below:  

Dani Covello- Women’s Tennis 

After transferring from Brenau University in Gainesville, Georgia, Covello quickly established herself as one of the top players at Baylor, earning All-Big 12 in Doubles as a junior and finishing the 2005 season ranked No. 21 nationally and competing in the NCAA Doubles Championships with teammate Zuzana Cerna. As a senior, Covello went undefeated in conference matches going 10-0 and posting a season record of 32-14 in singles and 18-16 in doubles. She also clinched Baylor’s regular-season Big 12 title with the win at Texas the same year. 

The Toronto, Canada native ranked as high as No. 80 by ITA in 2006 and she ended her career at Baylor with an overall singles record of 60-39 and doubles record of 56-39.

Mamadou Diene- Men’s Basketball

Diene was a 4-year letterwinner for the Bears from 2005-2008. In his first varsity season, he was named to the Big 12 All-Freshman Team by the Dallas Morning News and the Waco Tribune-Herald. In 2007, the Sporting News publication named him the Best Shot Blocker in the Big 12 Conference, and he currently ranks 6th all-time at Baylor in that category. Diene helped usher the Bears to their first Big 12 Tournament Championship in 2007, and to the program’s first NCAA Tournament in 20 years in 2008.

Diene, along with 5 other members of Coach Scott Drew’s first recruiting class are credited with being the foundational players that led the Bears’ historic resurrection from the bottom of the Big 12 to an NCAA Tournament bid in 2008, the NIT finals in 2009, and ultimately to the program’s National Championship. Those five players, known as “The Foundation” were inducted into the Baylor Athletic Hall of Fame in 2021.

Abiola Wabara- Women’s Basketball

Wabara was a 4-year letterwinner for the Lady Bears from 2003-2006. Known for her remarkable defensive skills, she earned Big 12 Co-Defensive Player of the Year honors in 2006, and she was named to the league’s all-defensive team, while also earning honorable mention All-Big 12.  During her senior season, Wabara led the Lady Bears in blocks with 40, recording at least one block in 22 games. Her 40 blocks rank her 9th on Baylor’s single-season performance list, and she ranks 10th for the program’s Career Blocks.

Wabara excelled off the court as well, earning the 2006 Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar Award and the Allstate Good Works Team Award, recognizing her outstanding achievement in academics athletics, and community service. 

Jerry Mallett- Baseball

A two-sport letterwinner for the Bears from 1955-1957, Mallett’s performances on the baseball diamond and the basketball court place him among the most elite athletes in Baylor sports history.  He is ranked in the Top 10 all-time among Baylor’s hitters with a career batting average of .429, and he was the 1957 Home Run champion in Southwest Conference.

On the basketball court, Mallett was a two-time all-conference performer, and he was selected to Baylor Men’s Basketball’s All-Centennial team.

Despite being selected by the Syracuse Nationals in the 1957 NBA Draft, Mallett pursued a professional baseball career, playing six seasons including one season with the Boston White Sox. He has been inducted into the Baylor Athletic Hall of Fame and the Southwest Conference Hall of Fame.

Kayce Walker Hedrick- Softball

Walker was a 4-year letterwinner for the Bears from 2009-2012. She is a 4-time All-Big 12 honoree and she ranks in the Top 10 in Career Batting Average with .343, Career Hits with 230, and Career Stolen Bases with 83. She tied Baylor’s Single-Season record with a .413 batting average that was ultimately broken seven years later by her younger sister Kayla.

In the classroom, Walker was selected as a CoSIDA’s Academic 1st Team All-District honoree, and she earned All-Academic Big 12 for three consecutive years.  

David Galic- Men’s Tennis

Always known as a strong Doubles player, Galic finished his four-year Doubles career with an 80-47 mark.  His 80 victories are the 7th most Doubles Wins in program history.  He twice earned a spot on the All-Big 12 Doubles team, and he was the Big 12 No. 1 Doubles co-champion in 2009.  That duo finished the season ranked 20th in the final ITA rankings.

Galic’s outstanding performances in 2009 helped the Bears claim the regular season Big 12 championship for the eighth straight year and the ninth time in 10 seasons.

Remaining Baylor Legend spring recognitions:

April 10- Blair Shankle- Women’s Tennis

April 15- Michael Griffin- Baseball

April 28- Jason Jennings- Baseball

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