Central lands six on football academic squad
PELLA — Central College landed six players in the National Football Foundation Hampshire Honor Society for academic achievement.
The Hampshire Society, in its eighth year, recognizes senior football players who are starters or significant reserves and carry a cumulative grade point average of 3.20 or higher.
Central ranked second in the Iowa Conference, the first time in seven years the Dutch did not lead the league. However, Central has had 61 honorees in that span, by far the most in Iowa. The Dutch ranked third in the nation in 2011-12 with 17 honorees and had 11 players cited in 2007-08 and 2010-11. Four Central players were honored in 2008-09 and 2009-10.
Nationwide, 838 players from 267 schools were recognized. Johns Hopkins University (Md.) topped this year’s field with 12 honorees.
Nolan Blythe (Orange City, MOC-Floyd Valley HS) heads the Central list. Blythe, a wide receiver, carries a 3.94 grade point average with a chemistry major.
“This illustrates the kind of student-athlete we look for at Central,” McMartin said. “We look for the complete person, someone with great character who is a leader, an outstanding student and a talented football player. The young men on this list definitely exhibit those qualities and I couldn’t be happier about this honor. It speaks very highly of our program and our players.
“We talk about champions always being champions and that who we are on the football field needs to be reflected in who we are in the classroom and in our daily life.”
The Hampshire Honor Society is the latest component of the National Football Foundation’s efforts to promote combined athletic and academic success. The NFF’s National Scholar-Athlete Awards program, launched in 1959, was the first to credit a player for academic success, football performance and community leadership.
Central’s honorees include:
Name (hometown/high school) Position GPA Major
Nolan Blythe (Orange City/MOC-Floyd Valley) WR 3.94 Chemistry
Jacob Edleman (Mechanicsville, North Cedar) DB 3.31 Business management
Joe Flaherty (Burlington) OL 3.37 Social science
Blaine Forsythe (Pella) WR-P 3.65 Elementary education
JJ Kotz (Indianola) DL 3.76 Elementary education
Tanner Price (Des Moines/Christian) K-P 3.30 Biology