Four members of the Owls’ athletic programs won major awards over the last week, including three members of the football team and one from the women’s basketball team.
After a dominating performance on the field, quarterback Chandler Burks was recognized for his abilities in the classroom by being named to the Football Championship Subdivision Academic All-Star Team.
As one of nine players chosen from across the nation for this distinction, Burks is in the running for a $5,000 postgraduate scholarship, and two winners will be chosen in June for the scholarship. As a sports management major, Burks has maintained a 3.88 GPA this school year and was named Scholar-Athlete of the Year in the Big South Conference.
Standout linebacker Bryson Armstrong won the Sports Team Analysis and Tracking System FCS Jerry Rice Award, which honors the most outstanding freshman player in the nation.
Armstrong came into the season as a little-known freshman, but he quickly became a vital part of the team’s success. Maintaining high tackle numbers on a weekly basis, Armstrong became the focal point of the defense in stopping both the rushing and passing game. His ability to play an important strategic role, even when not tackling, allowed the rest of the defense to succeed.
He finished the season with 114 total tackles, 11 sacks and three interceptions. Armstrong holds the team records for both sacks in a season and tackles in a game.
“This award means a whole lot. I almost don’t feel deserving of it, considering it’s named after one of the best NFL players of all time, but it is a very humble experience,” Armstrong said. “I can’t wait to shake hands with Mr. Rice as it is an honor to meet him.”
At the head of the massive success achieved by the football team is head coach Brian Bohannon, who was honored as the FCS Coach of the Year.
In just three seasons, Bohannon has taken a newly-created football team from obscurity to a well-known competitive team that can go up against the best in the FCS. Under Bohannon, the Owls recorded a 12-2 overall record this season and made it to the FCS quarterfinals. The Owls finished the season as the top rushing offense in the nation and finished second in interceptions.
“It’s a tremendous honor to be named the American Football Coaches Association FCS Coach of the Year,” Bohannon said. “This speaks volumes about our program and how our players, coaches and support staff bought into the process at Kennesaw State. Anytime you receive an individual award, it’s a reflection on the program and a commitment made by everyone involved.”
In women’s basketball, freshman guard Kamiyah Street earned Atlantic Sun Conference Freshman of the Week on Tuesday, Jan. 9.
It was her third time winning this award this season along with previously winning ASUN Conference Player of the Week. Street currently ranks third in the conference in scoring average with 15.7 points per game.