Archive | July, 2017

Two Colonels picked Preseason All-OVC; Colonels picked to finish 5th

Two Colonels picked Preseason All-OVC; Colonels picked to finish 5th

Posted on 24 July 2017 by admin

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Two Colonels were selected to the 2017 Preseason All-Ohio Valley Conference football team. Defensive end Aaron Patrick and punter Keith Wrzuszczak earned preseason all-conference honors.

Last season, Patrick was a first team All-OVC honoree. He was also selected to the 2016 Hero Sports Sophomore All-America first team. The 6-foot-4, 227-pound Dayton, Ohio native was second in the OVC, and 42nd in the nation, with an average of 0.64 sacks per game. He led the team with seven sacks and 10 tackles for a loss. He also had 10 quarterback hurries, one pass break-up and one forced fumble. Patrick finished eighth in the OVC with an average of 0.91 tackles for a loss per game.

He had eight tackles and 2.5 sacks at Tennessee Tech (Oct. 1). He finished with a season-best nine tackles at Ball State (Sept. 17) and against No. 2 Jacksonville State (Oct. 22).

Wrzuszczak was a second team All-OVC selection after last season. The 5-foot-11, 202-pound Geelong, Victoria, Australia native ranked third in the conference and 17th in the nation in punt average. He averaged 42.1 yards on 59 punts while placing 28 punts inside the 20 yard line. He had seven punts of 50 or more yards. Wrzuszczak’s directional skill helped EKU lead the OVC in net punting (41.19 ypp) and punt return defense (2.50 ypp). The Colonels ranked third and fourth in the nation, respectively, in those two categories.

He placed four punts inside the 20 yard line at Ball State (Sept. 17). He averaged 48 yards per punt at Tennessee State (Oct. 15). Wrzuszcak averaged 47.3 yards on seven punts at Tennessee-Martin (Oct. 29) while placing three inside the 20 yard line and booming a season-best 63-yarder.

The Eastern Kentucky University football program has won two national championships, 21 conference titles and has made 21 playoff appearances. No other Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) team has won at least two FCS national titles and 20 or more conference championships.

The Colonels will open their 2017 season at Western Kentucky on Sept. 2 at 7 p.m. ET. Eastern’s first home game is slated for Sept. 23 against Tennessee Tech. For season ticket information, contact the EKU Athletics Ticket Office at 844-3-GOBIGE.

EKU was picked to place fifth in the OVC this season in a preseason poll of league head coaches and communications directors.

Jacksonville State (128) received all 16 possible first-place votes and was chosen as the preseason favorite to win the league. Tennessee-Martin (107) was picked second and Tennessee State (96) third. Eastern Illinois had 81 points and was fourth in the poll.

EKU garnered 68 points in the preseason poll, four more than sixth place Tennessee Tech (64). Southeast Missouri (42) edged Murray State (41) for seventh. Austin Peay (21) rounded out the poll in eighth.

2017 Preseason All-Ohio Valley Conference Football Team

(Selected by OVC Head Football Coaches and Sports Information Directors)

Preseason Offensive Player of the Year: Patrick Smith (WR), Tennessee State
Preseason Defensive Player of the Year: Darius Jackson (DL), Jacksonville State

QBTroy CookUT MartinSr.
RBRoc ThomasJacksonville StateSr.
RBJaimiee BoweUT MartinJr.
RBYeedee ThaenratTennessee TechSo.
WRPatrick SmithTennessee StateSr.
WRJordon GandyMurray StateSr.
TEAddison BoundsEastern IllinoisSr.
CThomas BurtonTennessee StateJr.
OGJustin LeaJacksonville StateSr.
OGRobert BurleighUT MartinSr.
OTDylan ClineJacksonville StateJr.
OTKadarren BondUT MartinSr.
DLDarius JacksonJacksonville StateSr.
DLEbenezer OgundekoTennessee StateSr.
DLAaron PatrickEastern KentuckyJr.
DLRandy RobinsonJacksonville StateJr.
LBSiran NealJacksonville StateSr.
LBJoel McCandlessJacksonville StateSr.
LBChad MeredithSoutheast MissouriSr.
DBMarlon BridgesJacksonville StateSo.
DBKahlid HagensUT MartinSr.
DBReggie HallJacksonville StateSr.
DBD'Montre WadeMurray StateSr.
DBTae MartinUT MartinSr.
KLane ClarkTennessee StateSr.
PKeith WrzuszczakEastern KentuckySr.
RSCameron SandersSoutheast MissouriJr.
RSChris RowlandTennessee StateSo.

2017 OVC Football Predicted Order of Finish

(Selected by OVC Head Football Coaches and Sports Information Directors)
Order of FinishTeamPoints
1Jacksonville State128 (16)
2UT Martin107 (2)
3Tennessee State96
4Eastern Illinois81
5Eastern Kentucky68
6Tennessee Tech64
7Southeast Missouri42
8Murray State41
9Austin Peay21

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2017 Hall Of Fame Class Announced

2017 Hall Of Fame Class Announced

Posted on 19 July 2017 by admin

RICHMOND, Ky. – The Eastern Kentucky University Athletics Hall of Fame 2017 induction class features eight distinguished individuals and a team of distinction. The class will be enshrined inside the EKU Center for the Arts on Saturday, Oct. 7.

The 2017 induction class includes: Evy Abell McKemie (volleyball, 1975-78), Michael Haney (men’s basketball, 2001-05), Elroy Harris (football, 1985-88), Brad Morris (men’s golf, 1998-02), Dallas Robinson (men’s track and field, 2003-06), Charlotte Sizemore (women’s basketball, 1997-02), Jessie Small (football, 1985-89), Guy Strong (men’s basketball & baseball, 1955, 1967-73) and the 1982 football team.

The activities begin with a luncheon at noon. The group will also be recognized during the Colonels’ football game against Southeast Missouri later that day at 6 p.m.

Abell McKemie was a member of head coach Geri Polvino’s 1975 Kentucky Women’s Intercollegiate Conference (KWIC) championship team in 1975. She also helped the team win the Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (AIAW) Region II title in 1975. Abell McKemie was chosen all-state and all-region during her junior and senior years.

Haney concluded his career by earning first team All-Ohio Valley Conference honors and OVC Tournament MVP recognition after leading the Colonels to the conference tournament championship. He scored 1,289 points (11.4 ppg) and grabbed 783 rebounds during his career. Those numbers are 16th and eighth respectively in program history. In 2009, Haney was chosen to the EKU All-Century team.

Harris was a two-time first team All-OVC selection, the 1988 OVC Player of the Year and a first team All-America choice in 1988. He totaled 4,555 rushing yards and scored 58 touchdowns before being drafted in the third round by the Seattle Seahawks. He concluded his career as Eastern’s all-time leading rusher and now ranks second on that list. His 1,998 rushing yards and his 27 rushing touchdowns in 1988 are still program records. Harris is a member of the EKU All-Century Team.

Morris won three individual tournament titles his senior season in 2001-02 and was rated among the top five in the nation in scoring average during the fall season. He was chosen to the All-OVC team as a junior and a senior. His round of 65 at the Earl Yestingsmeier Invitational in September 2001 was the second lowest in program history at the time. His three-round total of 203 at the ECU Pirate Invitational a month later was a school record at the time. Morris was a four-time OVC Academic Medal of Honor winner and three-time Academic All-American.

Before representing the United States as a member of the bobsled team in the Winter Olympics, Robinson was a seven-time OVC Champion and the 2005 OVC Male Outdoor Track Athlete of the Year. He holds the school record in the indoor 200-meter dash and owns the third-best program mark in the outdoor 200-meter.

Sizemore, a three-time All-OVC selection, is the seventh leading scorer in program history with 1,561 points. She also registered 611 rebounds, 343 assists and 228 steals. Sizemore is the only player in program history to accumulate more than 1,000 points, 600 rebounds, 300 assists and 200 steals. The Hazard, Kentucky native still ranks among the top-10 in EKU history in field goals attempted (2nd), steals (4th), field goals (6th), scoring (7th), blocks (7th), three-point field goals attempted (7th), assists (8th), three-point field goals made (9th) and rebounds (10th).

Small was a two-time first team All-OVC selection for the Colonel defense. In 1988, he was selected to three All-America teams. Small still holds the EKU single season record for sacks with 13. In 1989, he was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in the second round.

As a student-athlete, Strong played one year on the baseball team and two seasons on the basketball squad, helping EKU win the 1955 OVC basketball championship. He returned in 1967 as the Colonels’ head coach, leading the program to another OVC title in 1972. Strong was selected as the OVC Coach of the Year that season after Eastern tied for first in the conference with a 9-5 record and then beat Morehead State in a playoff game to secure a berth in the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 1965. Strong’s team nearly upset Florida State in the first round, falling 83-81. The Seminoles would go on to reach the championship game.

The 1982 football team went undefeated in 13 games on its way to claiming the national championship. The Colonels were 7-0 in the OVC. Eastern beat Idaho, 38-30, and Tennessee State, 13-7, in the playoffs to advance to the title game for the fourth straight season. EKU completed the undefeated championship season with a 17-14 victory over Delaware.

For more information on the EKU Athletics Hall of Fame, please contact Karl Park, Executive Director of the EKU Athletics Hall of Fame, at 859-200-6686 or

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Canady A Nominee For Allstate Good Works Team

Canady A Nominee For Allstate Good Works Team

Posted on 18 July 2017 by admin

NORTHBROOK, Ill. – Redshirt senior Jeffrey Canady is a nominee for the 2017 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team®, one of the most esteemed off-the-field honor in college football.

Since 1992, the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® has brought together a select group of college football players from across the country to honor their dedication to volunteerism and enriching the lives of others. While players are often recognized for their accomplishments and achievements on game day, these student-athletes have made significant contributions to the greater good of society, inspiring future generations of young athletes and the larger college football community.

Canady is one of only two Ohio Valley Conference football players nominated for the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team®.

The Barbourville, Kentucky native has been involved in a host of community service projects including: Move In Day, EKU Fan Day, Colonels Cupboard (collects food for less fortunate students), Special Olympics Flag Football, National Roll Call, Jock N Roll (student-athlete organized fundraiser that sends a military veteran and his or her family to the OVC Basketball Tournament in Nashville), Teen Center, reading to elementary kids and cleaning up campus.

In the classroom, Canady earned his undergraduate degree in May 2017, graduating Cum Laude with a 3.63 grade-point-average. He was also selected to the 2016 College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-District® Football Team.

Comprised of 11 players from the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision and 11 players from the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision, Divisions II, III and the NAIA, the final roster of 22 award recipients will be unveiled in September. A special voting panel consisting of former Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® members and prominent college football media members will select the 2017 Good Works Team.®

This past season, Canady started all 11 games at linebacker. He led the team, was second in the OVC and seventh in the nation, with 123 tackles (11.2 tackles per game). He registered 5.0 tackles for a loss of 14 yards, had 1.5 sacks and two pass break-ups.

Canady had 10 or more tackles in a game seven times. He posted a season-best 17 tackles at Tennessee Tech (Oct. 1) and against Murray State (Nov. 5). That total tied for the 18th most in a single game in FCS football in 2016. He registered 15 tackles in the season-finale against Eastern Illinois (Nov. 19).

“Allstate is immensely honored to partner with the AFCA for the 10th year to help pay tribute to these players and their off-the-field ‘good works’ that often go unnoticed and unrewarded,” said Thomas Clarkson, president of the west territory for Allstate Insurance Company and a member of the 2017 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® voting panel. “The individuals nominated to the 2017 Good Works Team® are making a positive impact and uniting communities across the country through service, showing what’s possible when you put all hands in and give back.”

Two-time national champion, Heisman Trophy winner and 2009 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® member Tim Tebow will headline the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® voting panel. In addition to Tebow and Clarkson, the 2017 Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® selection panel members includes: former Good Works Team® members Zaid Abdul-Aleem (Duke, 1994 team), Matt Stinchcomb (Georgia, 1997, 1998 teams), Brian Brenberg (St. Thomas, 2001 team), Mike Proman (Amherst, 2002 team) and Wes Counts (Middle Tennessee State, 1999 team); media members Kirk Herbstreit (ESPN), Blair Kerkhoff (Kansas City Star) and Paul Myerberg (USA TODAY); current AFCA President and University of Arizona head coach Rich Rodriguez; 2001 AFCA President and current athletic director at Virginia Union University Joe Taylor.

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