Sun making plans to honor county's top student-athletes

Sidelines

March 17, 1996|By Pat O'Malley | Pat O'Malley,SUN STAFF

Plans are being made for the 14th annual Baltimore Sun All-Anne Arundel County Academic-Athletic Team that honors the county's top student-athletes.

Ten boys and 10 girls who combine the rare qualities of academic and athletic excellence will be chosen and honored at a banquet in conjunction with the Anne Arundel Trade Council spring general membership meeting on May 20.

Application ballots for the team will soon be running on these pages and all high school students who reside in Anne Arundel County are eligible.

Two overall winners, one male and one female, from among the 20 chosen will receive a special award. For information, stay posted in Sidelines or call my 24-Hour Sportsline, (410) 647-2499.

Scholar-athlete winner

Arundel's Mike McKnight, who will attend Harvard University, was the grand prize winner of a $4,000 scholarship at Wednesday's 33rd annual Scholar Athlete Awards Dinner at Martin's West in Woodlawn.

Ranked No. 1 in his class of 404 with a weighted GPA of 4.39, McKnight scored a perfect 1,600 on his PSAT and had a perfect 800 on the math section of his SAT and a 750 verbal score for a 1,550 total. McKnight was also a standout on the field. He was second in the county with eight interceptions, including one he returned for a touchdown, and had two fumble recoveries for the Wildcats. In his three-year varsity career under coach Bill Zucco, McKnight had 13 interceptions.

"Mike was a leader who the kids respected and looked up to on the football field," said Zucco, who attended the banquet with members of his staff, athletic director Bernie Walter, Arundel principal Midgie Sledge and a host of family and friends from the Gambrills school.

"He was like a second coach out there and we are really going to miss him."

In accepting his award, McKnight thanked God, his parents, coaches, teammates and Zucco "for being there for me on and off the field the last three years."

Zucco was on the football staff under the late Jerry Mears when Mike Finley became the first and only other Arundel football player to win the award, in 1975. McKnight is the seventh from Anne Arundel County to win the grand scholarship and the first since North County quarterback Eric Howard in 1993.

The keynote speaker, Navy football coach Charlie Weatherbie, challenged the scholar-athletes to "lead in the right way," something McKnight has made a habit of in high school.

Twas' a Wildcat week

McKnight's scholar-athlete award capped a big week for Arundel High.

The girls basketball team of coach Lee Rogers won the 4A State championship and distance runner Christy Nichols won the 3,200-meter run in the National Scholastic Indoor Championships Boston with a time of 10: 09, only six seconds off the national high school record.

In addition, Rogers was named county co-Coach of the Year and his 6-foot center Chavonne Hammond was named the county and All-Metro Player of the Year.

Rebounds

Annapolis has been invited by promoter Bill Spotts to play in next season's Charm City Classic. Coach John Brady's Panthers will boast two of the top seniors in the region in 6-7 Boo Diggs and 6-6 Brian Barber. . . With Baltimore teams such as Dunbar and Southern dominating the state basketball tournaments and security becoming a serious problem at Cole Field House, is it time to move the states to the Baltimore Arena or a local college?. . . . Broadneck's new gym is set to open in 1997, and how's about naming it after Tim McMullen, the man who helped build the school athletically and academically?

Special No. 1

Chesapeake's 1994 All-County and All-Metro left-hander, Jason White, a redshirt freshman, notched his first college win for James Madison in relief this week over UMBC, a school he almost attended.

Pub Date: 3/17/96

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