Ole Miss’ Saiz Helps Spain to Silver Medal at U20 European Championship

Ole Miss Men's Basketball vs LSU on Wednesday night, January 15th, 2014 in Oxford, MS.

Ole Miss Men’s Basketball vs LSU on Wednesday night, January 15th, 2014 in Oxford, MS.

HERAKLION, Greece — Ole Miss sophomore forward Sebastian Saiz finished with 6 points and 8 rebounds, as Spain fell 65-57 to Turkey in the gold medal game at the FIBA Under-20 European Championship Sunday.

Saiz and Spain claim the silver medal, its eighth-consecutive podium finish, and finished with a 7-3 record at the tournament, having won a bronze medal and finished with a 6-4 record at last year’s competition, where Saiz also represented Spain.

The Madrid native appeared in all 10 games, starting the last six and logging 21.2 minutes per game. He was fourth on the team in scoring, averaging 7.3 points per game, and second in rebounding, averaging 6.9 rebounds per game.

Saiz recorded two double-doubles with 13 points and 10 rebounds in a 60-58 second-round win over Greece and 13 points and 12 rebounds in a 63-61 semifinal win over Croatia. He also scored 10 points in a 65-53 first-round win over Germany and grabbed a personal-best 14 rebounds in a 76-59 second-round win over Great Britain.

As a freshman, Saiz played in all 33 games with 13 starts, averaging 5.1 points and 5.6 rebounds in 19.9 minutes per game. He scored in double figures three times, including a career-high 20 points in an 88-74 overtime win over LSU. He pulled down double-digit rebounds in five games, as he finished second on the team and fifth among Southeastern Conference freshmen in rebounding.

Ole Miss Players Make Nagurski, Outland Trophy Watch Lists

Cody Prewitt. Ole Miss Football vs Texas A&M on Saturday, October 12th, 2013 in Oxford, MS.

Cody Prewitt. Ole Miss Football vs Texas A&M on Saturday, October 12th, 2013 in Oxford, MS.

OXFORD, Miss. – The preseason honors are flooding in for Ole Miss football players this week.

On Thursday, sophomore defensive tackle Robert Nkemdiche was named to preseason watch lists for both the Bronko Nagurski Trophy and Outland Trophy, senior safety Cody Prewitt made the Nagurski list, and sophomore offensive tackle Laremy Tunsil made the Outland list.

Previously announced Rebels on watch lists are Prewitt (Bednarik Award), Bo Wallace (Maxwell Award), Evan Engram (Mackey Award) and Deterrian Shackelford (Lott IMPACT Trophy).

Nkemdiche was a Freshman All-American last year when he posted 34 tackles, 8.0 tackles for loss and 2.0 sacks. He ranked second among SEC freshmen with 0.73 TFLs per game and also carried the ball five times on offense, gaining 32 yards. The Loganville, Georgia, native has already been tabbed a preseason All-America and All-SEC pick by multiple publications this year.

Prewitt earned first team All-America honors as a free safety last year when he led the SEC and ranked among the nation’s leaders with six interceptions. The Bay Springs, Mississippi, native has been tabbed by most of the preseason magazines to repeat as an All-American in 2014. He was also a semifinalist for the Thorpe Award, which goes to the nation’s top defensive back.

Tunsil exploded onto the college football scene last year as one of the top young offensive linemen in the country. He received All-SEC and Freshman All-America accolades after allowing just one sack all year as the team’s primary starter at left tackle. He has been tabbed a preseason All-America and All-SEC selection, as well.

The Bronko Nagurski Trophy is presented annually to the national defensive player of the year by the Football Writers Association of America and the Charlotte Touchdown Club.

Players may be added or removed from the watch list during the course of the season. Once again, the FWAA will choose a Bronko Nagurski National Defensive Player of the Week each Tuesday throughout the season. If not already on the watch list, the honored player will be added at that time. The FWAA and the Charlotte Touchdown Club will announce five finalists for the 2014 Bronko Nagurski Trophy on Nov. 20.

The Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner will be chosen from those five finalists who are part of the 2014 FWAA All-America Team. The FWAA All-America Committee, after voting input from the association’s entire membership, selects the 26-man All-America Team and eventually the Nagurski finalists. Committee members, then by individual ballot, select the winner, the best defensive player in America.

The annual Bronko Nagurski Trophy Banquet will be held on Dec. 8 at the Westin Hotel in Charlotte. In addition to the 2014 Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner announcement, the banquet will also celebrate the recipient of the Bronko Nagurski Legends Award, sponsored by Florida East Coast Railway. Maryland’s Randy White, a member of the FWAA’s 1974 All-America team and a College Football Hall of Famer, will be honored. Alabama head coach Nick Saban will be the keynote speaker at the banquet.

The FWAA has named a National Defensive Player of the Year since 1993. In 1995, the FWAA named the award in honor of the legendary two-way player from the University of Minnesota. Nagurski dominated college football then became a star for professional football’s Chicago Bears in the 1930s. Bronislaw “Bronko” Nagurski is a charter member of both the College Football and Pro Football Halls of Fame. Pittsburgh tackle Aaron Donald won the award last season.

The Southeastern Conference dominated the 2014 Outland Trophy Watch List with 19 players – at least eight more prospects than any of the seven other major-college conferences represented on the 64-man list released by the Football Writers Association of America.

The Outland Trophy has been awarded to the best interior lineman in college football since 1946. The winner is chosen from three finalists who are part of the FWAA All-America Team. The FWAA All-America Committee, after voting input from the entire membership, selects the 26-man first team and eventually the Outland finalists. Committee members, then by individual ballot, select the winner. Only interior linemen on offense or defense are eligible for the award; ends are not eligible.

The list will be trimmed to six or seven semifinalists on Nov. 20. Four days later, three Outland Trophy finalists will be named by the FWAA. The winner of the 69th Outland Trophy, named after the late John Outland, an All-America lineman at Penn at the turn of the 20th century, will be announced on ESPN on The Home Depot College Football Awards on Dec. 11 from Disney’s Boardwalk in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. Pittsburgh defensive tackle Aaron Donald won the award last season.

The Outland Trophy presentation banquet, sponsored by the Greater Omaha Sports Committee, will be held on Jan. 15, 2015, in Omaha, Nebraska. This year, Notre Dame’s Ross Browner, the 1976 Outland Trophy winner, will be honored and presented an Outland Trophy, which was not given in the era in which he won the award.

CollegeChoice.net: 50 Best Colleges for Summer School

University of Mississippi named as one of top locations to study

Students looking to boost their academic credentials over the summer needn’t give up their precious vacation time completely. Some university campuses are naturally conducive to a healthy work-life balance; some are set in cool college towns replete with outdoor restaurants and cafés, happening music scenes, and interesting cultural activities; and yet other campuses are ideally placed for major music festivals. What’s more, many U.S. universities accept visiting and even international students, so as well as staying put, there’s also the option of heading somewhere new and exciting.

With that in mind, we’ve put together a list of the 50 most desirable U.S. colleges at which to attend summer school. The following institutions were selected based on their proximity to hip summer festivals, surf-ready beaches, majestic mountain scenery, hiking and cycling hotspots, water sports-friendly lakes and rivers, and action-packed towns where there’s always something going on.

Click here to see the full list.

Rebels to Host Washington, Georgia Tech, Jacksonville State in Oxford Regional

Rebels Face Jacksonville State on Friday at 7 p.m. CT

Ole Miss Baseball defeated Vanderbilt in the SEC Tournament on May 22nd, 2014 in Hoover, AL.

Ole Miss Baseball defeated Vanderbilt in the SEC Tournament on May 22nd, 2014 in Hoover, AL.

OXFORD, Miss. – One day after being named one of 16 host sites for the NCAA Baseball Tournament, Ole Miss learned Monday of the three teams it will be hosting. The NCAA announced Washington, Georgia Tech and Jacksonville State will join the Rebels at Oxford-University Stadium/Swayze Field with games being played Friday-Sunday, and Monday if necessary.

Washington (39-15-1), the regional’s No. 2 seed, and Georgia Tech (36-25), the No. 3 seed, will open play in the Oxford Regional on Friday at 3 p.m. CT. Ole Miss (41-18), the regional’s top seed, will then face the regional’s No. 4 seed, Jacksonville State (36-25), at 7 p.m. CT. A complete schedule for the regional is listed below. Both games Friday will be available on ESPN3.

“We’re excited to be playing at home in June,” Ole Miss head coach Mike Bianco said. “It’s certainly a great reward, but one that we feel is very deserved by this team that has played so well and consistently over the course of the season. It’s great to have baseball in Oxford in June again to reward the Rebel Nation for the support they has shown us and the role they play in our success.”

Tickets

Tickets for the tournament will be available in all areas of the stadium. Ticket books for general admission will be sold for $60, reserved seating will be $70, box seating will be $80 and Diamond Club seating will be $200. Each ticket book gains admission to every game of the Oxford Regional.

The Ole Miss Athletics Ticket Office is open daily 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. at the Tad Smith Coliseum. The ticket office will be closed Monday in observance of Memorial Day. Fans may order their regional tickets online via OleMissTix.com if they wish to order Sunday, Monday or after hours. Contact the ticket office at 888-REB-TKTS for more information.

The priority deadline for season ticket holders will be Wednesday at 12 p.m. CT.

Pending availability, single game tickets will go on sale Thursday online at OleMissTix.com or by phone. Box seats will sell for $20, while general admission and grandstand tickets are $15, and student tickets (college age or younger) are $10.

Single game tickets will be available for Will Call pick up Friday at the Tad Smith Coliseum until the middle of the 5th inning of the second game. Beginning Saturday, all tickets will be picked up at the Swayze Field box office. There, tickets will be open two hours prior to the first game each day and will remain open until the middle of the 5th inning of the day’s last game.

Parking

Parking passes will only be sold to those fans that held them during the regular season.  If any remain, those will be available on game day for $20 each. Cash only.

Free general parking is permitted at the South Lot located at Taylor Road and highway 6.  As a reminder, the Old Taylor Road bridge is under construction and closed, including all exit ramps. To enter campus from highway 6 you will need to take either the Coliseum Drive or Lamar Avenue exits.

Regular parking enforcement outside of designated baseball parking pass lots and the South Lot will be in affect Monday-Friday 7:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. Campus patrons parking outside of the designated baseball lots are subject to citations.

Teams

Ole Miss, the 10th ranked team in the country, is hosting its sixth regional in program history, and is making its 12th postseason appearance of the 14-year Bianco era. All six times the Rebels have hosted a regional have come under Bianco’s tenure.

The Rebels led the Southeastern Conference in batting average (.303), were third in the league in scoring (359) and fourth in home runs (36) this season. Ole Miss was second in the league in both slugging percentage (.417) and on-base percentage (.370), and the Rebels’ 2.76 team ERA was fifth in the highly competitive SEC, which set a record with 10 teams selected for the NCAA Tournament this year.

Three Rebels ranked in the top five of the SEC in hits this season. Junior outfielder Auston Bousfield led the conference with 87 hits, senior catcher Will Allen ranked second with 83 hits, and senior third baseman Austin Anderson finished in a tie for fifth with 76 hits.

Allen’s team-high .352 batting average was the second best in the SEC, while Bousfield’s .349 average was fourth in the league. Junior first baseman Sikes Orvis hit a team-high 12 home runs, which was the second most in the SEC.

On the mound, Ole Miss was led by Chris Ellis (9-1), Christian Trent (8-0) and Sam Smith (5-4). The Rebels’ weekend rotation held a 2.69 ERA, allowing 80 earned runs in 267.0 innings pitched. Ellis led the trio with a 2.17 ERA in 95.1 innings of work, while Trent posted a 2.44 ERA and Smith held a 3.58 ERA.

Ole Miss is 3-0 all-time vs. Jacksonville State, with the Rebels sweeping the Gamecocks in a three-game series to open the 2002 season. The Gamecocks, coached by Jim Case, won the Ohio Valley Conference Tournament Championship by becoming the first team in OVC history to win six straight elimination games in the tournament after losing their tournament opener.

Collectively, JSU held a .294 team batting average this season, with a .424 slugging percentage and a .372 on-base percentage. On the mound, the Gamecocks posted a team ERA of 4.56.

Senior outfielder Griff Gordon led Jacksonville State with a .376 batting average, a team-high seven home runs and 49 RBIs. Sophomore first baseman Paschal Petrongolo was third on the team with a .324 batting average, but led the team with 19 doubles and 53 RBIs.

Junior right-handed pitcher Zachary Fowler has a team-high seven wins for the Gamecocks, posting a 7-7 record with a team-high 88.0 innings pitched. Fowler pitched 7.2 innings in JSU’s OVC championship game victory over Tennessee Tech, allowing just five hits and striking out six. Junior relief pitcher Travis Stout, who picked up the save in that game, has 15 saves on the year, and has tied the school career record with 32 saves, which is also tied for the second most in OVC history.

The Rebels lost their lone meeting with Washington on June 5, 2004, by a 7-2 score in the Rebels’ first-ever time hosting an NCAA regional. Washington finished second in the Pac-12 Conference standings this year to Oregon State, which earned the No. 1 national seed in the NCAA Tournament. Led by head coach Lindsay Meggs, the Huskies closed out the regular season ranked No. 8 in the country by Baseball America. Washington hit .281 as a team with a .383 slugging percentage and a .367 on-base percentage.

Senior outfielder Brian Wolfe held a team-high .361 batting average for UW, hitting 10 doubles, a team-high 35 RBIs and five home runs, which is tied for the team lead with three different players. Junior infielder Trevor Mitsui is one of those Huskies with five home runs. Mitsui is batting .335, the second highest average on the team among those with at least 10 at bats, and has nine doubles and 32 RBIs.

Junior right-handed pitcher Tyler Davis leads the UW pitching staff with an impressive 10-2 record and a sparkling 1.75 ERA in 97.2 innings of action.

Ole Miss is 2-3 all-time vs. Georgia Tech, with the Rebels and Yellow Jackets last getting together in 1959. That year, Georgia Tech was still a member of the SEC, and Ole Miss defeated the Yellow Jackets in a three-game series to determine the SEC champion. The 2014 version of Georgia Tech baseball rallied in the Atlantic Coast Conference Tournament Championship game vs. Maryland by scoring the game’s final six runs after trailing 4-3 in the seventh inning to win 9-4. It was Georgia Tech’s second ACC title in the past three years and ninth championship in program history.

The balanced Yellow Jackets offense posted a .279 team batting average, a .378 slugging percentage and a .352 on-base percentage. The Georgia Tech pitching staff held a 3.26 team ERA.

Junior outfielder Daniel Spingola hit at a team-high .328 clip, knocking out three home runs to go with his team-high eight triples and 36 RBIs. Matt Gonzalez, Thomas Smith and Mott Hyde, who ranked second, third and fourth on the team in batting average, respectively, each knocked in 35 RBIs this year.

Dusty Isaacs led the Georgia Tech pitching staff with seven wins, going 7-5 with a 1.81 ERA in 59.2 innings of work. Josh Heddinger (4-4) led the Yellow Jackets with 76.2 innings pitched.

The Oxford Regional is paired with the Lafayette, Louisiana, regional for the super regional round. The UL Lafayette Ragin’ Cajuns earned the No. 6 national seed in the NCAA Tournament.

Oxford Regional Schedule

Friday, May 30
Game 1 – No. 3 Georgia Tech vs. No. 2 Washington – 3 p.m.
Game 2 – No. 4 Jacksonville State vs. No. 1 Ole Miss – 7 p.m.

Saturday, May 31
Game 3 – Game 1 loser vs. Game 2 loser – 1 p.m.
Game 4 – Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner – 5 p.m.

Sunday, June 1
Game 5 – Game 4 loser vs. Game 3 winner– 1 p.m.
Game 6 – Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner– 5 p.m.

Monday, June 2
Game 7 – Game 6 winner vs. Game 6 loser (if necessary) – 7 p.m.

All times Central

UM Students Dominate State Public Relations Association Awards

Meek School of Journalism and New Media wins all three top awards and 10 of 11 awards overall

University of Mississippi public relations students in the Meek School of Journalism and New Media won the three top awards in the Public Relations Association of Mississippi student competition and 10 out of all 11 awards presented. Pictured from left to right, are (front row) Bridget Quinn, a journalism major from Alpharetta, Ga. and Sofia Hellberg-Jonsen, a marketing communications major from Stockholm, Sweden; and (back row) Lauren McMillin, a journalism major  from Madison, Miss.; Caty Cambron, a journalism and Spanish major from Rome, Ga.; Wil Yerger, a marketing communications major from Jackson, Miss.; Olivia Rearick, a journalism major from Glen Ellyn, Ill.; Robin Street, lecturer in journalism and public relations; Katie Davenport, an integrated marketing communications major from Wiggins, Miss.; Madison Hill, a journalism major from Auburn, Ala.; and  Emily Crawford, a journalism major from Horn Lake, Miss. Not pictured: Laura Gaziano, an integrated communications major from Atlanta, Ga. Photo by Stan O'Dell.

UM public relations students in the Meek School of Journalism and New Media won the three top awards in the Public Relations Association of Mississippi student competition and 10 of 11 awards presented. Pictured from left to right, are (front row) Bridget Quinn, of Alpharetta, Georgia; and Sofia Hellberg-Jonsen, of Stockholm; and (back row) Lauren McMillin, of Madison; Caty Cambron, of Rome, Georgia; Wil Yerger, of Jackson; Olivia Rearick, of  Glen Ellyn, Illinois; Robin Street, lecturer in journalism and public relations; Katie Davenport, of Wiggins; Madison Hill, of Auburn, Alabama; and Emily Crawford, of Horn Lake. Photo by Stan O’Dell.

OXFORD, Miss. – Public relations students in the University of Mississippi’s Meek School of Journalism and New Media won the three top awards in the Public Relations Association of Mississippi student competition and 10 of 11 awards presented overall.

Journalism major Olivia Rearick of Glen Ellyn, Illinois, won both Student Best of Show for the best entry in the entire competition and the top award in her category, called a PRism. Marketing communications major Wil Yerger, of Jackson, also won a PRism. Those students won the only PRisms presented.

In addition, eight other students and their instructor, Robin Street, all won awards, which were presented April 25 at the PRAM state conference in Hattiesburg. In each category, the award a step below the PRism is the Award of Excellence, followed by the Award of Merit.

“Having 10 of our students get awards sets a record for us,” said Street, a lecturer in journalism and public relations. “It was overwhelming that the judges only chose 11 students’ work from all over the state, and 10 of those were ours.

“Our students demonstrated that they excel in the diverse set of skills needed to succeed in PR such as producing quality journalism, planning strategy and conducting research. That is a real tribute to the preparation they received from all the faculty members at the Meek School.”

Winning Awards of Excellence were Lauren McMillin, a journalism major from Madison; Madison Hill, a journalism major from Auburn, Alabama; Caty Cambron, a journalism and Spanish major from Rome, Georgia; and Street.

Awards of Merit were presented to Katie Davenport, an integrated marketing communications major from Wiggins; Sofia Hellberg-Jonsen, a marketing communications major from Stockholm; Bridget Quinn, a journalism major from Alpharetta, Georgia; Emily Crawford, a journalism major from Horn Lake; and Laura Gaziano, an IMC major from Atlanta.

The students entered public relations campaigns they produced as final projects in an advanced public relations class taught by Street. Each campaign required multimedia journalism skills, including writing news releases and feature stories, as well as creating video, photos, blogs and social media.

For more information on the Meek School of Journalism and New Media, visit http://meek.olemiss.edu or email MeekSchool@olemiss.edu.

In Search of Buffaloes

The Buffaloe "Herd"

The Buffaloe “Herd”

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve become increasingly interested in my family genealogy. Whether that’s because Ancestry.com has done some great advertising or I’ve just wanted to understand where I come from, I can’t be completely sure. Regardless, I’ve been fascinated with family history thanks to the internet and digitization of U.S. census data. Last weekend, I was able to connect some dots and answer some questions that the internet couldn’t solve when my parents and I attended the Buffaloe Family Reunion in Atmore, Alabama. So why does that matter? Thanks to some of the information I was able to gather, it turns out that I’m related to the venerable William Faulkner.

Now granted, it’s only by marriage, but the Buffaloe story seems fascinating and it looks as if members of my ultra-extended family were big supporters of Mr. Faulkner during his youth.

The story starts with William Embry (“Billy”) Buffaloe, my great, great, great, great grandfather, born in Wake, North Carolina in 1806. Billy had three brothers – Bryant, Henry, and Burwell. Of the four Buffaloe brothers, it seems that Billy was the only one who fought in the Civil War and all lived fairly long lives for the time period.

Billy’s older brother Bryant married and moved to Marshall County in Mississippi some time between 1840 and 1850. When he died in 1895, he had outlive 6 of his 13 children. His seventh child, George Washington Buffaloe (outstanding name, I must add) fought with the 4th Regiment of the Mississippi Infantry in the Civil War and eventually settled in Oxford. By 1893, George Washington Buffaloe owned a confectionery store and, according to Joel Williamson’s William Faulkner and Southern History, he was a “very popular merchant who sold everything from ice cream to fresh oysters in his downtown store and associated restaurant.” Moreover, “the Buffaloes were clearly in the social swim in Oxford, and they were affluent.”

Here’s where the Faulkner connections begins – Sherwood Butler (who would later become William Faulkner’s uncle) was one of Mr. Buffaloe’s store employees and struck up a romance with the store owner’s 22-year-old daughter, Addie Buffaloe. The two were married in 1894 and had a child (Edwin Ross Butler, William Faulkner’s cousin) in 1902.

While there is one reference to a “mechanical wizard” named Buffaloe in Faulkner’s book, The Reivers (awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1963), Williamson says he never made a clear reference to Sherwood, Addie, or Edwin in any of his writings (though it should be noted that the name ‘Addie’ is also the name of the main character’s mother in Faulkner’s novel, As I Lay Dying).

The Reivers by William Faulkner

The Reivers by William Faulkner

Although it’s a long shot and it took some winding through family trees to get there, I’ve been surprised to find out so much about my family’s connection to Faulkner and his fondness for his Aunt Addie and Uncle Sherwood. Not only has it renewed my interest in Faulkner, Oxford, and north Mississippi, but it’s brought me one step closer in my search for the Buffaloes.

 

 

Undeniable Proof You Need to Play More Video Games

I’m not a big “gamer,” but I do enjoy grabbing my Playstation 3 controller and playing video games from time to time. Now that I’ve become an adult, gotten married and have a full-time job, I can no longer stay up all night playing first-person shooter games like Halo or sports games like NCAA Football ’13. However, on occasion, I indulge in the action-adventure video game series, Assassin’s Creed.

Produced by Ubisoft, the first game in the series appeared back in 2007 and I’ve been hooked ever since. The game follows a line of ancient assassins throughout history. From traveling through the Holy Lands during the Third Crusade to following the path of the Italian Renaissance in the 15th and 16th centuries, the outstanding story line allows gamers the opportunity to transport themselves to a time in which modern-day historians can only dream about.

It’s a game that draws you in and tells a great story. And I’ll admit that I’ve had more than one Assassin’s Creed weekend playing binge over the last two years.

Suffice to say, when I was made aware of University of Mississippi Assistant Professor Nicolas Trepanier‘s recent article about teaching a class using Assassin’s Creed in a May issue of the American Historical Association’s Perspectives on History, I knew I had missed the boat to play video games for school. It’s a pretty interesting read.

Dr. Trepanier discusses the benefits and limitations of using video games as a teaching tool in the college classroom as well as how to deal with some of the inaccuracies of historical video games.

While I’ve never been a history buff, this teaching concept sounds like something I could get behind. Looks like I’ll be going back to school (and playing a lot more video games).

 

Three Sports Earn Prestigious APR Award

Women’s Cross Country, Golf And Volleyball Honored

Photo by Nathan Latil, UM Brand Photography

Photo by Nathan Latil, UM Brand Photography

OXFORD, Miss. — Three Ole Miss teams have been recognized among the elite academic programs in the country in their sport with the NCAA’s announcement of the public recognition awards on Wednesday. The Ole Miss women’s cross country, women’s golf and women’s volleyball  teams received the prestigious honor for their latest Academic Progress Rates (APR).

The teams that are recognized posted multi-year APRs in the top 10 percent of all squads in each sport.  All three Rebel teams posted a perfect 1000.

Among Southeastern Conference institutions, Ole Miss’ total of three teams is tied for third in the number of its programs to win the award this year.

“Graduation and retention are key markers of academic and athletic success,” said senior associated athletics director Derek Cowherd.  “Overall, we are pleased with the work of our staff, coaches, and our student-athletes who continue to move towards graduating at a higher percentage.   Our goal is to consistently post a strong number of teams in the top 10 percent of all institutions in graduation and retention.”

Each year the NCAA honors selected Division I sports teams by publicly recognizing their latest multi-year APR. This announcement is part of the overall Division I academic reform effort and is intended to highlight teams who demonstrate a commitment to academic progress and retention of student-athletes by achieving the top APRs within their respective sports.

A model of consistency in the classroom, Michele Drinkard’s women’s golf team makes the list for the sixth straight year. This year, Ole Miss is among 98 Division I women’s golf teams and five SEC squads to earn the distinction.

Volleyball earned the award for the third time and second year in a row.  The Rebels are one of 66 Division I programs and only two SEC teams to earn the recognition.

Women’s cross country received this recognition for the second year in a row. The Rebel runners are one of 80 Division I women’s cross country teams and four from the SEC to make the list.

Multiyear APRs for all Division I sports teams, including the teams receiving public recognition, will be announced May 14.  That announcement also will include APP penalties for low-performing teams, teams subject to postseason ineligibility and head coach APRs.

The Eastern Progress: Student Earns Award for Ole Miss Grad Program

An Eastern student recently won a prestigious award that will pay for her schooling while studying fiction writing at the University of Mississippi.

Ashley Mullins, a senior studying creative writing, was the winner of the 2014 John and Renée Grisham Fellowship Award. The fellowship is valued at $60,000 and will pay for her to continue her studies at Ole Miss, where she’ll pursue an MFA in fiction writing later this year. Read the full story.

Robin Street Receives Top PRAM award

Robin Street, (on right) Meek School of Journalism and New Media lecturer, who coordinates the School’s PR program, was presented the Professional Achievement Award from the Public Relations Association of Mississippi by PRAM President Shannon Coker. The award, given to one PR professional yearly, is given for outstanding achievements in the profession of PR.

Robin Street, (on right) Meek School of Journalism and New Media lecturer, who coordinates the School’s PR program, was presented the Professional Achievement Award from the Public Relations Association of Mississippi by PRAM President Shannon Coker. The award, given to one PR professional yearly, is given for outstanding achievements in the profession of PR.

OXFORD, Miss. – Robin Street, lecturer in the University of Mississippi’s Meek School of Journalism and New Media who coordinates the school’s PR emphasis, was presented the Professional Achievement Award by the Public Relations Association of Mississippi.

The award, given to one professional yearly, is the association’s top honor. It was presented to Street April 25 at a ceremony in Hattiesburg by PRAM President Shannon Coker. Recipients “embody the highest degree of professionalism, are committed to advancing the profession and have outstanding achievements in the practice of public relations,” according to PRAM.

Street was previously named PRAM’s Educator of the Year, and it is rare for an educator to be honored in the professional category. However, judges selected Street for her continued involvement in the profession, the multiple awards her work has won, and her commitment to ethics and diversity, according to Tara Burcham, PRAM vice president for awards.

“The judges said she is an inspiration to her students and other professionals,” Burcham said. “They also noted that her commitment to the field of PR is unparalleled.”

Multiple former students who are now PR professionals joined in supporting Street’s nomination.

Former student Alex May-Sealey wrote,”Her career achievements speak for themselves, but it is her enthusiasm, energy and ideas that truly make her shine as an inspiration to all. Robin is an excellent mentor and is consistently a favorite among her students and colleagues.”

Other student statements of support included, “(T)he epitome of a public relations professional.” “Trains the next generation of PR professionals while being one of the best the profession has to offer.” “A woman of integrity, keen intelligence, responsibility, calm confidence and compassion.”

“Although Ms. Street is winning this award for one year, she has practiced quality public relations for decades,” said H. Will Norton Jr., professor and dean of the journalism school.

Street’s previous awards include a Silver Anvil Award of Excellence from the Public Relations Society of America, the highest award given for PR work, and more than 30 awards in the PRAM Prism and the Southern Public Relations Lantern competitions. Her work previously won “Best in Show” from in both the Prism and Lantern competitions and twice won “Judges Choice” in the Prisms.

As the PRAM winner, Street now becomes Mississippi’s nominee for the SPRF multi-state competition.

For more information on the Meek School of Journalism and New Media, visit their website at http://meek.olemiss.edu or email MeekSchool@olemiss.edu.