Grambling’s Dawson on Henry award: ‘More work to be done’

gramblinghamFirst-year Grambling athletics director J. Lin Dawson isn’t settling for this year’s C.D. Henry Award, which recognizes the top men’s program in the Southwestern Athletic Conference.

He’s got his sights set on the overall trophy.

“Grambling Athletics is committed to providing resources that will help our student-athletes to graduate, win championships, and develop as leaders,” Dawson told me. “We are grateful for the recognition from the Southwestern Athletic Conference that shows that our men finished ahead of the pack. Yet, there is more work to be done. Our women teams competed well this year, and we are expecting great things in the months ahead.”

Grambling won championships over the last year in football, and indoor and outdoor track and field. GSU was second place in cross country, and third in tennis.

But Grambling fell seven points short of capturing the overall Commissioner’s Cup for the top all-around program in the conference, a prize that’s eluded the program since 1997 under the late Robert Piper. Jackson State, last year’s runner up in football, took top billing with a stronger finish in the women’s division.

Grambling last earned the men’s recognition in 1971-72, the award’s second year of existence. The Henry trophy is named after the late athletic department administrator who led Grambling’s College of Health, Physical Education and Recreation and also served in various roles for the SWAC.

HERE ARE THE FINAL OVERALL TOTALS:
2009 Southwestern Athletic Conference Commissioner’s Cup

• Jackson State: 160
• Grambling: 153.5
• Alabama State: 136.5
• Southern: 132.5
• Prairie View A&M: 124.5
• Arkansas-Pine Bluff: 111.5
• Alabama A&M: 92
• Mississippi Valley: 91
• Texas Southern: 90
• Alcorn State: 74

Jackson State earned conference championships in men’s and women’s golf, women’s tennis and women’s outdoor track to capture the program’s fourth all-sports award since the award was first presented in 1991-92 — and its eighth women’s sports award since that trophy’s inception in 1979-80.

The Barbara Jacket/Sadie Magee Trophy, given anually to the SWAC’s top women’s program, is named after the winningest basketball coach in Jackson history (Magee) and a former standout Prairie View A&M track and field coach (Jacket).

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