Belton, Texas – University of Mary Hardin-Baylor football player Javicz Jones has been voted American Southwest Conference Male Athlete of the Year in balloting of ASC Sports Information Directors and selected media members. The ASC Male and Female Athlete of the Year Awards are the most prestigious on-field awards presented by the conference.
Jones was a four-year letterman for the Cru football team as a linebacker from Morton Ranch High School in Katy. He was named D3football.com National Defensive Player of the Year this year and became just the second ASC player to win national player of the year honors from D3football.com. Jones claimed his second straight ASC Defensive Player of the Year honor this fall and earned First Team ASC All-Conference honors for the third straight season. He is also a two-time D3football.com South Region Defensive Player of the Year and earned All-South Region honors in each of the last two seasons. Jones led the Cru with 135 tackles and also set a school record with eight interceptions. He added 12.0 tackles for loss, 5.0 sacks, six pass break-ups and two blocked kicks while scoring four defensive touchdowns and a safety. He became the first ASC player to return two interceptions for touchdowns in a single game when he turned the trick against East Texas Baptist this season. Jones played for four conference champions, four NCAA Playoff qualifiers and three National Quarterfinalists during his Cru playing career. He broke the UMHB and ASC career and single-season tackle records during his career and also had a free-agent tryout with the Houston Texans this spring. Jones was named to the D3football.com All-America Team, Associated Press Little All-America Team, American Football Coaches' Association All-America Team and Beyond Sports Network All-America Teams following his senior season.
Jones is the eighth UMHB student-athlete to win ASC Athlete of the Year honors. He joins men's basketball player Robert Moore (two-time winner, 00-01, 01-02) football player Preston Meyer (02-03), football player Cody Fredenburg (03-04), women's golfer Holly Glover (04-05), football player Josh Kubiak (06-07) and football player Jerrell Freeman (07-08) as the Cru's winners of ASC Athlete of the Year honors. U.T.-Dallas basketball standout Kyle Schleigh finished second in balloting for ASC Male Athlete of the Year. Texas Lutheran baseball player Sean Kistler finished in third place.
"It has just been such an incredible experience the past four years here at UMHB," Jones said. "To have a chance to win this honor and represent this school is something I am very proud of. I didn't really reflect on any of these honors or accolades until after the season and they all mean so much to me and to my family and friends and the University. Each award I get, I really appreciate it and my career at UMHB means so much to me."
"Javicz Jones is the epitome of what college football is all about," Mary Hardin-Baylor football head coach Pete Fredenburg said. "He is an impeccable leader who demands as much from himself as he does from his teammates. He is a well-rounded athlete that is as well respected in the classroom as he is on the football field. He is very deserving of this honor and I could not think of anyone who deserves it more."
Hardin-Simmons women's soccer player Katie Kuykendall won ASC Female Athlete of the Year honors. U.T.-Tyler softball player Joey Cronin was second and Louisiana College basketball player Natosha Gottleib finished third. UMHB women's golfer Taylor O'Rear was the Cru's nominee for ASC Female Athlete of the Year. O'Rear (So., Salado HS) won her second straight ASC Individual title this spring, becoming just the second golfer in conference history to win two individual titles. O'Rear also finished third individually in the NCAA Tournament while leading the Cru women to the first NCAA Division III National Championship in UMHB history. She was a WGCA All-American and All-West Region selection and also earned Academic All-ASC honors this season.