SMSU FOOTBALL: Four SMSU senior student-athletes earn NFF accolades

IRVING, Texas – Southwest Minnesota State University senior football student-athletes Jon Dicke, Carter Kirk, Hudson Walton and Connor Wilkie were recently named to the National Football Foundation’s Hampshire Honor Society for significant contributions on the field and in the classroom.

Qualifications for membership in the NFF Hampshire Honor Society include: being a starter or significant contributor in one’s last year of eligibility at an accredited NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision, Football Championship Subdivision, Division II, Division III or an NAIA college or university, achieving a 3.2 cumulative grade point average throughout the entire course of undergraduate study, and meeting all NCAA-mandated progress towards degree requirements.

Dicke, a defensive lineman, was named a 2018 Google Cloud CoSIDA Academic All-American for the second straight year this past December and was honored with the 2018 NSIC Glen Galligan Award which is presented which is given to football student-athlete who participates at his institution for four years and is academically superior while making a positive contribution to the institution. Dicke was also chosen as a semifinalist for the National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame William V. Campbell Trophy, which recognizes the top football scholar athlete in the nation. A native of Rochester, Dicke was a four-year letter winner at SMSU is majoring in exercise science.

Kirk, a native of Mountain Lake, played one season for the SMSU football program in 2018, following four seasons as a key member of the SMSU men’s basketball team. Kirk, a multiple Academic All-NSIC honoree, is an exercise science major.

Walton was a three-year letter winner for the Mustangs and a two-time Academic All-NSIC honoree. He is an elementary education major and hails from Cedarburg, Wis.

Wilkie, an two-time Academic All-NSIC honoree from Andover, is a physical education major and was a four-year letter winner for the Mustangs.

“We are pleased to see another record number of athletes honored by the Hampshire Honor Society this year,” said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. “For more than a decade, it has become a powerful vehicle for schools to recognize their college football players who have distinguished themselves both academically and athletically, and we congratulate the schools and each of these young men for their commitment to excellence in all aspects of their lives.”

The 1,643 players honored in 2019 sets a new high water mark, eclipsing the previous record of 1,274 honorees in 2018. The 424 schools represented breaks the previous mark of 308 set in 2018.

The initiative has now honored 10,660 student-athletes since its inception, and the program has experienced growth every year in either members or school participation since its launch in 2007.

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