Athlete of the Week: Nick Mears

AUSTIN HAMM Sports Editor

Usually, The Collegian Sports Athlete of the Week is a space reserved where we honor the recent performance of a jackrabbit athlete in competition. But this week, we honor junior safety Nick Mears of the football team, who was named to the 2015 Football Championship Subdivision Athletic Directors Association Academic All-Star Team Jan. 8.

Mears was one of 52 student athletes selected to the FCS ADA Academic All-Star Team. Eight of the honorees were from Missouri Valley Football Conference members. Nominees must be in at least their second year of athletics and academic standing, have maintained at least a 3.2 cumulative GPA and have been a starter or key player.

Mears started all nine games in which he played during the 2015 season, recording 54 tackles, three pass breakups and a pair of forced fumbles.

An economics major who maintains a 4.0, Mears was also named to the Missouri Valley Football Conference All-Academic First Team and the first-team CoSIDA Academic All-America honors.

Mears’ recognition for his hard work in the classroom serves as a reminder of the importance of the academic side of student athletes.