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VMI Keydets Rack Up Awards

Kate (Collins) Noll ’14 was named to the Big South All-Decade Team in June, along with Stan Okoye ’13. Noll’s recognition was for track and field, while Okoye’s was for basketball. Many other Keydets were recognized for achievements during the spring and summer of 2020. Photo courtesy VMI Keydets.

Kate (Collins) Noll ’14 was named to the Big South All-Decade Team in June, along with Stan Okoye ’13. Noll’s recognition was for track and field, while Okoye’s was for basketball. Many other Keydets were recognized for achievements during the spring and summer of 2020. Photo courtesy VMI Keydets.

Keydet athletes, staff and alumni were recognized for their hard work and accomplishments with numerous awards over the summer. Below is a by-sport summary.

Jon Clines ’20 earned first-team academic District 3 baseball honors from the College Sports Information Directors of America May 15. He had a 3.79 GPA and majored in economics and business. Read more here.

VMI red-shirt sophomore outfielder Will Knight ’21 earned first-team honors in June 2020 with the release of the annual Virginia Sports Information Directors University Division All-State baseball team. It marks the sixth-straight year a Keydet has garnered all-state baseball accolades, Knight is the third first-teamer named over that span. Read more here.

Former VMI basketball standout Stan Okoye ’13 was named to the Big South Conference 2010-19 Men’s Basketball All-Decade Team presented by Hercules Tires in June 2020. Okoye, a 6-6 forward from Raleigh, North Carolina, finished his VMI career (2009-13) as the program’s fourth-leading scorer with 2,146 points and second-leading rebounder (962). He was named the 2012-13 Big South Player of the Year. Read more here.

Dave Forman, director of strength and conditioning and head football strength coach at VMI, was named Master Strength and Conditioning Coach by the Collegiate Strength and Conditioning Coaches association. Forman was notified about his award in May 2020 but will be presented with the award in May 2021. Read more here.

After an excellent 2019 season as the team’s primary long snapper, VMI junior Robert Soderholm ’22 was named a HERO Sports FCS Preseason All-American announced in May 2020 by the website. Read more here.

With the 2020 season scheduled to start in a few weeks, college football expert Phil Steele released his Southern Conference preseason all-conference picks, which included several VMI gridders. Read more here.

Former VMI women’s track and field athlete Kate (Collins) Noll ’14 was named to the Big South Conference 2010-19 Women’s Indoor Track & Field All-Decade Team presented by Hercules Tires. Noll, a two-time Big South champion in the pole vault and three-time All-Big South recipient, is one of the top field athletes in VMI program history. A six-time ECAC qualifier (three indoor, three outdoor), the Lovingston, Virginia, native came in third in the vault at the 2012 BSC indoor meet and became just the second VMI woman to ever clear 12 feet (12’4”). Read more here.

Neal Richards ’19 was named the 2019-20 Bob Waters Southern Conference Male Athlete of the Year in June 2020. Richards was named a second-team All-American by the National Wrestling Coaches Association this season, becoming just the third Keydet and first since 1999 to earn All-America honors. The 174-pounder shared SoCon Championship Most Outstanding Wrestler honors in 2020, taking the award for the second straight season after winning the league title in the weight class and qualifying for the NCAA Championships for the third time in his career. Read more here.

A total of six VMI student-athletes were recognized recently with the release of the 2019 Women’s All-Academic list from the Association of Collegiate Water Polo Coaches in July 2020. To be eligible for consideration, a student-athlete’s head coach must be a member of the ACWPC, while the athlete must attain a grade point average (GPA) in excess of 3.20. Read more here.

Six water polo Keydets were also recognized with spots on the 2019-20 Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Academic Honor Roll July 20, 2020. To be eligible for the MAAC Academic Honor Roll, a student-athlete must hold a cumulative grade point average of 3.20 or higher on a 4.0 scale. Read more here.

Editor’s Note: This article was compiled with information from vmikeydets.com.