Nov. 1, 2006
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Southern Miss' Men's Athletics and two former Golden Eagle athletes were presented with team and individual Halbrook Awards during the 73rd Annual Mississippi Association of Colleges and Universities Conference, held at the McMillan Multi-Purpose Center in Holly Springs, Miss., recently.
"This is a significant honor to have the highest percentage of male athletes graduating," Director of Athletics Richard Giannini said. "We work hard to achieve high standards that our student athletes continue to meet. It's a tribute to the coaches and our staff across all programs for pushing academic success."
Administered by the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning, the State Board of Community and Junior Colleges, and the Mississippi Association of Independent Colleges, the purpose of the Halbrook Award is to recognize colleges and universities that maintain and achieve high academic standards for student athletes, thus encouraging high graduation rates.
Southern Miss Men's Athletics received the distinguished award for the third- consecutive year.
Certificates also were awarded to individual student athletes who excel in academics, leadership, and/or community service. Former Golden Eagle athletes Marc Maddox and Charity Butler were Southern Miss' male and female recipients this year.
Maddox, drafted in the ninth round by the Kansas City Royals in the 2006 Major League Baseball Draft, was a first-team 2006 All-Conference USA performer, earned ESPN The Magazine First-Team Academic All-American honors, as well as being a two-time Conference USA Scholar Athlete of the Year. He finished last season with a .313 batting average with seven doubles, two triples, a personal-best and team-high 18 home runs, 70 RBIs and 14 stolen bases. He finished with 142 total bases for a .577 slugging percentage and a .412 on-base percentage.
For his career, the Hattiesburg, Miss., native finished as the school's all-time leader in home runs (53), hits (296), runs scored (228), total bases (514) and games played (244).
Butler, a first-team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American in 2005, a first-team ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District selection for three-consecutive years and the Conference USA Scholar-Athlete of the Year, signed a professional contract with the Michigan Ice this past summer.
She had her best season in 2006, finishing with 15 doubles and 60 hits, while posting a .284 batting average. The 15 doubles were the fourth best single-season performance in school history, and she finished tied for third in Conference USA in that category this season. She was also Conference USA's Hitter of the Week on April 3 this year.
Butler was selected as the 2006 Southern Miss Female Athlete of the Year and earned 2006 National Strength and Conditioning All-American honors.
She concluded her career with a .276 batting average, 172 hits, 33 doubles, four triples, three home runs, 70 RBIs, 222 total bases and 39 stolen bases. She ranks tied for fifth in career hits, tied for sixth in runs, 13th in RBIs, tied for fourth in doubles and eighth in stolen bases.