Sometime around this time of year is the blog's official birthday, and we're celebrating six years strong this month. And like every year, it's time to hand out an award as if it matters. This works like so: I provide 12 nominations. Sometimes I provide 13 if I can't decide. The whole point is to celebrate the all-around excellence of the athletic program, so it's not cheating if I expand the list at times; really, it's cheating if I don't.
The nominees then get their own post, two at a time, wherein I explain why each of them is awesome, and then I open up the voting; the final award is picked (mostly) by the voters. I reserve the right to interpret the votes how I like; a "go vote for this person" campaign will not be ignored but it has resulted in a split award in the past. This is for fun and there is no trophy or trip to the Bahamas (YET) so I can do that.
Past winners have come from a variety of teams, which is absolutely ideal for an award like this. Here is the list:
2009: Danny Hultzen (baseball)
2010: Diego Restrepo (men's soccer)
2011: Danny Hultzen (baseball)
2012: Mike Scott (men's hoops), Morgan Brian (women's soccer)
2013: Jarmere Jenkins (men's tennis)
Additionally, there's been one four-time nominee, which itself is a pretty neat thing; that would be Paige Selenski of field hockey.
Without further ado, these are this year's nominees in alphabetical order:
Morgan Brian - Women's soccer
Jasmine Burton - Volleyball
Elly Buckley - Field hockey
Mark Cockerton - Men's lacrosse
Danielle Collins - Women's tennis
Alex Domijan - Men's tennis
Joe Harris - Men's basketball
Nathan Kirby - Baseball
JB Kolod - Men's diving
Denny McCarthy - Men's golf
Kevin Parks - Football
Nick Sulzer - Wrestling
Courtney Swan - Women's lacrosse
Yes, 13 again. A sign that we're just about bursting at the seams, again, with quality athletes. And there aren't even any swimmers this year, which is probably a first. One thing I know is a first: there's never been a volleyball nominee before. That's a team on the rise, though, deserving of some recognition and putting forth a deserving nominee to receive it.
Over the next, oh, couple of weeks or so, each nominee will be profiled and appropriately lauded for their accomplishments. Voting will then open for about another two weeks, and the winner will be announced mid-July-ish. Happy reading.