View Past Reciptients:
You can scroll to a specific school below:
Jackson State Community College
Jackson State Community College’s male athlete of the year, Garrett Byrd, played baseball for the Green Jays. A 6-foot-1 outfielder from Martin, he had a .344 batting average with 45 RBI, 41 hits, 12 home runs, six doubles and a triple last season. He has a 3.0 grade point average.
Jackson State Community College’s female athlete of the year, Tia Hymon, plays basketball for the school. The 6-foot-1 forward is the nation’s leading shot blocker among junior colleges, averaging 5.5 blocks per game. She had 11 blocks against Columbia State. This season she averaged 10 points and 11 rebounds per game and shot 53 percent from the field. After graduating among the top 10 in her class at South Side High School, she continued her stellar academics at JSCC. She will graduate with honors in May.
Lane College’s female athlete of the year, Millay Lambert of Florence, Ala., played softball for the Lady Dragons. She was first-team all-conference after finishing second in the SIAC and eighth in the nation with her .477 batting average. She was second in the SIAC in on-base percentage (.541), fourth in slugging percentage (.712) and first in triples (6). She set a Lane record for runs in a season with 51. She was the only player to start all 42 games as Lane set a school record for victories with 26. She has a 3.94 grade point average and will graduate in May with a degree in mass communications.
Lane College’s male athlete of the year, O’Joshua Bunton, is a stellar sprinter on the Dragons’ track team. The junior from Crawfordsville, Ark., is Lane’s first two-time NCAA First Team All-American and has qualified for the Team USA summer trials. He won the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference championship in the 100-meter dash with a time of 10.43 seconds and placed second in the 200 meters with a 21.04. In the NCAA Division II National Track and Field Meet he set a Lane record in the 100 meters with a qualifying time of 10.36. He placed second in the national meet with a 10.45 in the 100 meters and finished fourth in the 200 meters with a 20.52.
Union University’s female athlete of the year, Jordan Vick of Camden, played volleyball for the Lady Bulldogs and was a four-year starter at the setter position. At 5-foot-8, she finished her career with 3,449 assists, 1,008 digs, 423 kills, and 109 aces. She set the program record for assists in a career during Union’s NCAA D2 era. Among her numerous awards, she was all- region, a three-time All-Gulf South Conference selection, and a four-time member of the GSC Honor Roll. She spent the summer of 2022 representing USA Volleyball playing in Brazil. She is presently in graduate school at Union to earn a master’s in education.
Union University’s male athlete of the year, Ty Parks, played basketball for the Bulldogs. A 6-foot-5 guard from Middleton High School, he was a starter since his freshman season at Union and had 1,546 points, 843 rebounds, 229 assists and 102 steals in his career. He shot 50 percent from the field in his career and made 147 3-point shots. He earned numerous awards including the Bevo Francis Award as one of the Top 100 players in his division. He was NCAA D2 National Player of the Week, All-Gulf South Conference and on the GSC Honor Roll. He is in graduate school at Union and plans to play professional basketball overseas.