Sun Belt Conference Recognitions Unveiled at Autumn Gatherings

During the annual Fall Meetings held in Atlanta, the Sun Belt Conference officially acknowledged the recipients of awards for the 2022-23 season at the Sun Belt Honors Banquet.

South Alabama secured the conference’s most prestigious accolade, the Vic Bubas Cup, which represents the Sun Belt’s all-sports championship trophy. This esteemed award is presented each year to the conference’s top-performing athletics department, determined by a points-based system. Remarkably, this marked the 16th time that the Jaguars had claimed this honor, solidifying their status as leaders in the conference. Impressively, South Alabama, which sponsors 17 out of the Sun Belt’s 19 sports, tied for the Sun Belt regular-season men’s tennis championship and achieved top-four finishes in various leagues, including football, men’s cross country, women’s soccer, men’s indoor track & field, women’s indoor track & field, men’s golf, softball, men’s outdoor track & field, and women’s outdoor track & field.

Keith Gill, the Sun Belt Conference Commissioner, expressed appreciation for the dedication and achievements of all the honorees for the 2022-23 season. He noted the honor in recognizing and celebrating their accomplishments during the event in Atlanta. The Sun Belt also unveiled its Student-Athletes of the Year, with Karly Heath from Louisiana (softball) and Carlton Martial from Troy (football) earning these distinctions. Additionally, the conference recognized its previously announced Postgraduate Scholar-Athletes of the Year: Korie Kreps from ULM (softball) and Kacper Dworak from Louisiana (men’s tennis). Notably, the conference also acknowledged its NCAA Woman of the Year Nominees, including Macie Majoy from Marshall (women’s track & field) and Katelyn Cartwright from Southern Miss (women’s cross country). Furthermore, the 2023 Sun Belt Conference Faculty Member of the Year was Dr. Zachary Farris, an Associate Professor of Public Health & Exercise Science at App State, and each institution’s nominee received recognition.

The Student-Athlete Advisory Committee honored Louisiana with both the Community Impact and Community Service Awards, while James Madison received the Student-Athlete Graduation Rate Award. Jeff Bourne, Director of Athletics at Dukes, was acknowledged for his remarkable 25 years of dedicated service to the institution, ahead of his scheduled retirement in Spring 2024.

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