Friday, October 5, 2012

Creating a Legacy: Jones Sets Sights on Senior CLASS Award

MACON, Ga - Deion Jones takes to being a leader on and off the soccer field. As a senior at Florida Gulf Coast he is a two-time All-Atlantic Sun selection a co-captain for the two-time defending A-Sun regular-season champion Eagles, he has served three years on the Eagles Council, and is now its president. He’s on the school’s Ethnic Diversity Committee, is the Student Government Director of Sustainability, and the president of the Phi Eta Sigma Honor Society.

Now he can also add to his resume that he is one of 30 candidates nominated in the country to the Senior CLASS award.

The Senior Class Award is meant to highlight NCAA Division I seniors that have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition and focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.

Jones joined FGCU in 2009 in hopes to start something new with the soccer program as they were reclassifying to Division I. When Jones talked about his most memorable moment with the Eagles, he did not pin-point a specific game or award, more so a feeling that the team had in 2010 after they won their first conference regular season title.

“The feeling we had in the season before we were able to go into post season was most memorable.” Jones said, “Going into the spring we were really ready to go for the next season and hit the ground running.”

Now in his senior season Jones strives to be well rounded not just athletically but academically. He carries a solid 3.42 GPA as an environmental studies major. He took an interest in environmental studies after taking a general ecology class where his professor inspired him to think outside of words in text books. Jones said, “He proved that it is a learning experience for everyone even him, and that you can’t be tied down to just getting the right answer. That professor helped me change my view point academically."

When asked how he felt to be a candidate for the Senior Class Award he humbly said “It means a ton. Adam Glick was nominated last year and just to be mentioned in the same breath as Adam Glick is awesome, because he is a really great person so just to be put in the same category as him is a major accomplishment.”
Jones embodies what it means to be a team player and gives credit to teammates, coaches, professors and his family for all of his accomplishments. “I think personally, I’d like to look back at it when I’m done here and think that I was a well-rounded person not just athletically but in the university scheme of things as well, but also that I was a good role model for the underclassmen that are here now. I want them to be able to take over when I’m gone and continue their success.”

The Senior Class candidates will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the regular season, and those 10 names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one male candidate and one female candidate who best exemplify excellence in the four Cs of community, classroom, character and competition.

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