Coach Jay Hopson, Quarterback John Gibbs Jr. amongst Alcorn’s five nominations for the 2015 HBCU Awards

This year’s award ceremony recognizing historically black colleges and universities will have representation from Alcorn State University.

Alcorn will have five finalists in the fifth annual AARP HBCU Awards that will be presented on Hampton University’s campus Friday, July 10. Alcorn will be nominated in the following categories: Best Student Government Association, Brittany Noble-Jones for Alumna of the Year, Jay Hopson for Male Coach of the Year, John Gibbs Jr. for Male Athlete of the Year and Alcorn State University Football for Men’s Team of the Year.

Gibbs had a spectacular year. He was named the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) Championship game’s Offensive Most Valuable Player, where he completed 20 of 30 passes for 245 yards and three touchdowns. He also rushed for 132 yards, becoming the first quarterback in Alcorn’s history to rush for 1,000 yards in a season. Gibbs was also named the SWAC’s Co-Offensive Player of the Year.

Hopson, who was signed to a three-year contract extension at the beginning of the 2014 season, led the Braves to a 10-3, 8-2 SWAC record, making this the second season in a row of capturing 9 or more wins. His skillful coaching led the Braves to their first SWAC championship win and National Black College Football Championship crown in 20 years.

Alcorn is no stranger to winning big at the awards ceremony. In 2012, the University was named HBCU of the Year. The next year, Distinguished Scholar Myrlie Evers Williams won the Lifetime Achievement Award and the Female HBCU Faculty Member of the Year award. Alcorn has been nominated for 25 HBCU awards since its inaugural ceremony in 2011.

Created by HBCU Digest Founding Editor Jarrett L. Carter Sr. in 2011 and crowning winners in the fields of leadership, arts, athletics, research, and community engagement, the HBCU Awards is the first national awards event to recognize the influence and impact of HBCUs on American culture.

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