Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Tuskegee Ratliff named ASWA Small College Athlete of the Year

 Jewell Ratliff 
TUSKEGEE, Alabama -- Jewell Ratliff made a name for himself during the 2015 season, topping each performance with another for the record books throughout the record-breaking season for the Tuskegee University football team.

Six months after playing his final collegiate game in the NCAA Division II playoffs, Ratliff was named the Alabama Sports Writers Association (ASWA) Small College Athlete of Year this weekend.

The award joins a long list of awards won by Ratliff this season, as the senior was one of a handful of student-athletes who was named to all of the major Division II All-American teams.

"I just want to thank everyone who voted for me," Ratliff said. "Although this award has my name on it, I know it would have been hard for me to get without my teammates. Those were my brothers out there playing and we always made sure we laid it on the line for Tuskegee."

Ratliff earned accolades on 10 different All-American Teams. He earned honors from the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA), Associated Press Little All-America Team, BOXTOROW, D2football.com, D2CCA, Don Hansen, Football Gazette, HERO Sports, SBN Black College Football All-American and USA College Football.

The New Orleans native was also named the SIAC Player and Defensive Player of the Year this season, recording 148 total tackles. The total was the highest recorded by a Golden Tiger since Jerome Hawkins recorded 168 in 1977.

The total by the Cliff Harris award finalist – award given to the best defensive player in small college football - is the also the fourth highest total by a Golden Tiger since 1973.

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