The Boxtorow National HBCU Football Annual Awards were announced at the HBCU All-Star Gala Banquet held at the Westin Peachtree Hotel in downtown Atlanta on December 16.

Jackson State quarterback Casey Therriault received the Offensive Player of the Year award. The senior from Wyoming Park, Mich. was named the 2011 Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) Offensive Player of the Year after leading the conference in passing yards (3,808), completion percentage (60.0), attempts (453), completions (272), touchdowns (27), pass efficiency (143.7) and total offense per game (355.5).  Five times he threw for more than 300 yards in a game and threw for more than 400 yards in a game four times.

The Defensive Player of the Year award went to Prairie View A&M defensive end Adrian Hamilton.  A senior from Dallas, Texas, Hamilton was named 2011 SWAC Co-Defensive Player of the Year. He led the nation in sacks (20.5) and registered 26.5 tackles for loss, while racking up 81 tackles (59 solo).

For the first time Boxtorow awarded a Rookie of the Year award, as Howard quarterback Greg McGhee was recognized.  The freshman from Pittsburgh, Pa. was voted the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Rookie of the Year.  He was third in the MEAC in total offense (197.5) and completed 182-of-321 passes for 1,784 yards with 13 touchdowns.  He started all 11 games and also rushed for 388 yards and four rushing touchdowns.  McGhee’s teammate and leading wide receiver Willie Carter accepted the award on McGhee’s behalf.

Also during the awards, Winston-Salem State head football coach Connell Maynor was recognized as the Boxtorow National Coach of the Year.  Maynor led the Rams to a 13-1 record, a semi-final finish in the NCAA Division II Playoffs and a No. 1 ranking in the Final 2011 Boxtorow HBCU Football Media Top 10 Poll.  His team was also recognized and the Norfolk State Spartans were recognized as HBCU National Champions in the Final Boxtorow FCS HBCU Football Coaches Top 10 Poll.

The awards were a part of the overall event which benefited Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.  Howard University graduate Steve Wyche, senior writer with and a regular on NFL Network announced the winners.

Pro Football Hall of Famer and former Washington Redskins star Darrell Green was part of the awards ceremony. Green and Florida A&M head football coach Joe Taylor were the keynote speakers.

FROM THE PRESS BOX TO PRESS ROW (Boxtorow) is a nationally syndicated sports talk radio show which places major emphasis on HBCU Sports.  The show can be heard on radio stations around the country and Fridays from 1-2 p.m. ET on SiriusXM Channel 141.  The award winners were voted on by some of the top media members in the country who cover HBCU football.


Donal Ware

Special to the AFRO