Nine named as finalists for Tech Athletics 2013 Man of the Year Award

Nine named as finalists for Tech Athletics 2013 Man of the Year Award


COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – The Tennessee Tech University Athletic Department has announced the names of nine finalists for the school’s 2013 Man of the Year Award, with the winner to be announced Sunday.

To be eligible for the Man of the Year Award, students must be a senior or graduate student who has completed his athletic eligibility during 2012-13. Criteria for selecting the award include both athletic and academic accomplishments, as well as additional areas such as community involvement and public service.

The Awards Committee has selected three members from the baseball team, two from football, and one each from basketball, cross country, golf and tennis teams. The finalists, listed in alphabetical order, are:

Syrym Abdukhalikov, Almaty, Kazakhstan (Tennis)
In just two seasons, Syrym wrote his name throughout the Tennessee Tech men’s tennis record books, leading the Golden Eagles to back-to-back unbeaten marks and a 17-0 record in Ohio Valley Conference regular season matches while manning the No. 1 singles and doubles positions. This spring, he was named the OVC Player of the Year, leading Tech to a 9-0 record within the league. Individually, he posted a flawless 9-0 record against OVC opponents during the regular season and was 10-0 for the year against OVC foes, including one win in the tournament, finishing his career on a 10-match winning streak. In doubles play, he teamed with sophomore Alejandro Augusto for an identical 9-0 record against the league. He finished with a 14-2 record in singles play during the dual match season. He was named first-team all-OVC and was named the OVC Player of the Week three consecutive times. His .708 winning percentage in singles matches this spring ranks seventh all-time in Tech history, and his .680 overall winning percentage for the year ranks 10th. For his two-year career, he went 32-19 in singles play and his .627 career winning percentage ranks as the eighth-best in Tech history. His two-year combined career mark of 60-39 gives him a .606 winning percentage, which ranks sixth in school history. He was recently named Tech’s Outstanding Male Athlete for 2012-13.

Tristan Archer, Kingsport, Tenn. (Baseball)
A four-year starter, Tristan Archer spent much of this season rewriting the Tennessee Tech record books and firmly cementing a place among the all-time greats in Tech history. Archer finished his incredible career owning three Tech career records, including wins (23), starts (55), and innings pitched (323.2). Archer also finished his four seasons at Tech ranking second all-time in strikeouts with 273 and third in K/walk ratio with a 2.81 mark. On the year, Archer broke his career-high in wins, leading the Golden Eagles with nine wins in 2013, ranking second in the Ohio Valley Conference. The nine victories tied for third most in a single season in Golden Eagle history. His 97 strikeouts this season ranked second in the OVC and tied for fourth most in a single season in Tech history. He finished the season with a 4.22 K/walk ratio, second best all-time for a TTU player. Archer’s 97.0 innings pitched ranked first in the OVC and third most in a single season among Tech players. His 15 starts also tied for the all-time team high in a single year. He finished the season with three 10-plus strikeout performances, including his first career complete-game shutout over SIUE. The performance led to the senior garnering his fourth career OVC Pitcher of the Week honor. A member of the 2010 OVC all-Freshman team, Archer was also named OVC Player of the Week by College Sports Madness this season as well as College Sports Madness’ OVC Pitcher of the Year. He earned all-OVC first team honors this season while helping lead the Tech squad to the most wins in team history and a 40-17 record. The team has also set an OVC and program record for conference wins in a season with 24. Voted as one of three captains of the 2013 squad, Archer is a six-time Athletics Director Honor Roll member, a member of the 2011-12 OVC Commissioner’s Honor Roll, and a two-time member of the Dean’s List. The senior has been heavily involved in community service in his career, volunteering as a Bell Ringer for Cookeville Mission, working several middle school field day events, assisting at the annual Fall Funfest, and helping run the Golden Eagle Baseball School’s annual High School Elite Camp.

Terrell Barnes, Riverdale, Ga. (Basketball)
A four-starter under head coaches Mike Sutton and Steve Payne, Terrell Barnes has amassed 85 starts in 119 games played during his time in a Golden Eagle uniform. In four seasons, he racked up over 500 rebounds and nearly 400 points while recording over 100 assists and playing almost 2,500 minutes. Limited this season with a foot injury, Barnes grew into a valuable leader both on and off the court for head coach Steve Payne and the rest of the Golden Eagle men’s basketball team. The senior spent last summer as a member of the U.S. Eagles Men’s Basketball team. The squad, competed in East Asia as part of a cultural exchange helping to develop the game of basketball on the international level. Barnes has been a leader in the community as well, volunteering with the men’s basketball team at several events, including the Parkview Book Fair, Algood Tomahawk Trot, hosting the kids of Mustard Seed Ranch, and making visits to several middle and elementary schools throughout the preseason. A 2013 spring graduate and two time member of the Athletic Director’s Honor Roll, Barnes will look to begin his career as a teacher after earning his degree in multidisciplinary studies.

Taylor Hennigan, Cookeville, Tenn. (Football)
Taylor wrapped up a four-year career in which he joined his father, former player and coach Mike Hennigan, in becoming the first father-son duo in OVC history to each capture conference football championships when he helped the 2011 Golden Eagles win the title. As a senior, he capped off his career with a pair of prestigious honors. In February, he was Tech's 2012 winner of the University Scholar-Athlete award, presented annually by the Middle Tennessee Chapter of the National Football Foundation. In May, he was named to the NFF Hampshire Honor Society for outstanding academic achievement. He has been active representing Tech off the field in a variety of roles. In addition to volunteering with the Better Business Bureau and Habitat for Humanity, he is a member of the EXPW Major Club. He has been a regular on both the OVC Commissioner's Honor Roll and the Tech Athletic Director's Honor Roll. On the field, he played free safety, strong safety, wide receiver and long snapper during his four seasons, and won the Tech Pride Award in 2012. 

Greg Kitts, Caryville, Tenn. (Golf)
A four-year competitor for the Golden Eagle golf team, Greg demonstrated reliable leadership throughout his career. This season, he competed in a team-high 33 rounds over 12 events, carding an average of 76.15. His six rounds of par or better ranked second on the team. Greg’s lowest round of the season, a four-under 68, came in the first round of the Skyhawk Classic in October. He went on to finish in a tie for 12th out of the 77 golfers in that tournament. Two weeks later, Kitts carded a three-round score of 219 at the F&M Bank APSU Intercollegiate, tying for 13th out of 81 competitors.

Tre Lamb, Calhoun, Ga. (Football)
Despite missing the final four games of the season due to injury, Tre Lamb was still chosen as the winner of the team’s Most Valuable Offensive Player Award. Lamb was on course to shatter nearly every school passing and total offense record before injuries hampered his play in the middle of the season and sidelined him for the final four games. He already set more than 20 school standards in his final two seasons, this year passing for 1,872 yards and 17 touchdowns in eight games. He finished with 45 career TD passes and more than 5,000 passing yards. He continued to be a vocal presence on the sidelines, aiding his replacement and providing assistance wherever needed. At the conclusion of the year, Lamb was chosen as a permanent team captain. Lamb appeared in 33 games in his career and piled up 5,632 yards of total offense, including 5,301 passing yards. He threw for 45 touchdowns and rushed for another nine, accounting for 54 trips into the end zone. He completed 60.8 percent of his career passes and finished with a quarterback rating of 140.3. Following graduation in December, he joined the Golden Eagle coaching staff.  Off the field, Tre was a volunteer with the football team in a Habitat for Humanity building project, and was a regular participant in FCA meetings and activities. Back home in Georgia, he worked at numerous youth football camps and has represented his high school and the Tech coaching staff in fundraising golf tournaments for Susan G. Komen and FCA.

Adam McLeod, Kingsport, Tenn. (Cross Country)
A high achiever in the classroom throughout his lifetime, Adam graduated from Tennessee Tech in three years with a degree in chemical engineering and a 3.94 grade point average. His most recent honor came from Capital One/CoSIDA where he was named Academic All-District. Among team leaders in every meet during the 2012 cross country season, he posted his best effort at the OVC Championship with a second-place finish on the squad. He ran a career-best 8K time at the OVC Championships, and posted his 10K career-best at the NCAA Regional. He helped the Golden Eagles win the OVC Team Sportsmanship Award in 2011. He was listed on the Athletic Director's Honor Roll every semester at Tech, and on the OVC Commissioner's Academic Honor Roll every year.  He was the recipient of the Captain W.L. Anderson Scholarship and the Eastman Chemical Company Academic Scholarship. He won the OVC Academic Medal of Honor for the highest GPA in the league. He is also a member of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. Away from competition and the classroom, he served as a volunteer at the Cookeville Jaycees 5K Race in 2011 and 2012, and the OVC Championships in 2010. He was a volunteer for the Bristol, Tenn., Helping Hands Health Clinic, the Girls Club of Kingsport, Tenn., and as a tutor at Northeast State Community College. He was also a nominee for TTU’s prestigious Derryberry Award.

Nick Price, Clinton, Tenn. (Baseball)
Nick Price has put together arguably the best season of his four-year career this season, setting career highs in ERA (4.88), strikeouts (42), wins (5), and appearances (20). Price’s five wins ranks third on the team and his 20 appearances are tied for second. He sits just one appearance away from cracking the top 10 in career appearances. Price has also thrown the fourth most among Tech pitchers this season, tossing 48.0 innings. He has helped lead the Tech squad to the second most wins in team history, boasting a 37-14 record. The team has also set a program record for conference wins in a season with 22. A six-time Athletic Director’s Honor Roll member, Price has been named to the Dean’s list three times throughout his college career and was named to both the 2010-11 and 2011-12 OVC Commissioner’s Honor Roll. The senior has been heavily involved among community activities, volunteering at the Cookeville Fall Funfest, Fitness Festival at Sycamore Elementary, Golden Eagle Baseball School’s High School Elite Camp, and Fall Baseball Kid’s Camp.

Austin Wulf, Beaver Falls, Pa. (Baseball)
In four seasons as a starter for the Golden Eagle squad, Austin Wulf has provided a huge impact on the Tech program, wrapping up his career in the top 10 of several statistical categories as well as being a leader both on and off the field. Over the last three seasons, the senior has not missed a start, playing over 150 consecutive games in center field for the Golden Eagles. Wulf ranks fourth on the career list for games played, appearing in 205 in four years. He currently sits in second place among career leaders in at bats (794) and needs just 10 hits to break the all-time career hits record of 253 set by Chad Oberacker. Wulf has amassed 160 runs, 36 doubles, 88 walks, and 30 stolen bases in his career and also boasts and incredible .993 fielding percentage. This season alone, the senior has yet to make an error while recording 103 putouts. He is batting .300 in 2013, scoring 46 runs and recording 62 hits, 16 doubles, 31 RBI. He has helped lead the Tech squad to the second most wins in team history, boasting a 37-14 record. The team has also set a program record for conference wins in a season with 22. Named as one of three captains of the Tech squad, Wulf has demonstrated his leadership and toughness on numerous accounts, highlighted by playing most the 2012 season with a badly hurt elbow after leading the Ohio Valley Conference in hit-by-pitches with over 20. The senior was a member of the 2010 OVC All-Freshman Team, and earned Athletic Director’s Honor Roll status twice. He has been heavily involved in the community, helping out at as a Bell Ringer for Cookeville Mission, working several middle school field day events, assisting at the annual Fall Funfest, and helping run the Golden Eagle Baseball School’s annual High School Elite Camp.