Mack, Hickson named Minority Student-Athletes of the Year by university

Mack, Hickson named Minority Student-Athletes of the Year by university

By TTU Sports Information

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee Tech basketball student-athletes Kajon Mack and Yaktavia "Shug" Hickson have been named the Minority Student-Athletes of the Year, as announced by the university's Office of Multicultural Affairs last week.

Mack and Hickson were both recognized at the annual Multicultural Affairs & Commission on the Status of Blacks awards luncheon on Tuesday, April 3. The Minority Student-Athletes of the Year awards are given to one male and one female graduating student-athlete.

The male and female recipient, according to the award's criteria, is "an individual who embodies what it means to be a Tennessee Tech Golden Eagle, balancing the duties of being a student-athlete with rigorous coursework." The recipients also need to maintain good GPAs.

Mack, a graduate guard from Los Angeles, started all 32 games for Tech and helped the Golden Eagles finish the 2017-18 season in the OVC Tournament quarterfinals. He was the team's second-leading scorer, averaging 12.8 points per game, and was also third with 5.1 rebounds per game.

Mack is pursuing a master's degree in professional studies at Tech after earning his bachelor's in management from Tulane back in May 2016. He also was awarded the OVC Academic Medal of Honor, which is given annually to the student-athletes who earn the highest GPA in a conference-sponsored sport, following the 2016-17 season. Mack currently carries a perfect 4.0 GPA and is set to graduate this spring.

Hickson, a senior guard from Atlanta, led the Tech women in both scoring and rebounding during her final season with 11.9 points and 6.0 rebounds per game. She started each of Tech's 29 games.

Hickson is on track to graduate this spring with a degree in exercise science, physical education and wellness with a concentration in sport administration. She carries a 3.027 GPA through the fall 2017 semester.

All of Tech's graduating minority student-athletes were invited to the awards luncheon, and those who attended received certificates of graduation achievement.

Those graduating student-athletes include:

  • Mike Cain, football (graduating in spring 2018)
  • Tim Collins, football (on track to graduate in fall 2018)
  • Asia Harper, women's basketball (graduated in fall 2017; enrolled in graduate school)
  • Jordan Jackson, football (graduating in spring 2018)
  • Alex Junior, baseball (graduating in spring 2018)
  • Sky Lane (graduating in spring 2018)
  • Sharnique Leonce, track & field (graduating in spring 2018)
  • Chris McElderry, football (graduating in summer 2018)
  • Curtis Phillips, Jr., men's basketball (graduating in fall 2018)
  • Josh Poplar, football (graduating in spring 2018)
  • Deven Sullivan, football (graduating in spring 2018)
  • Kellie Williams, volleyball (graduating in spring 2018)