FORT MYERS, Fla. – FGCU men’s soccer senior Deion Jones (Tampa, Fla./Freedom HS) has been named one of the initial 30 candidates for the Senior CLASS Award, announced by the media outlet on Tuesday.
To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – community, classroom, character and competition. An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
Jones was selected to the 2012 A-Sun Preseason All-Conference team as well as a TopDrawerSoccer.com A-Sun Top 20 Player to Watch (No. 7). He is also a College Sports Madness Preseason A-Sun Defensive Player of the Year and Preseason A-Sun first team selection.
As a junior in 2011, Jones was selected to the A-Sun All-Conference first team and A-Sun Academic All-Conference team. He helped the Eagles to a 12-6-2 overall record, while securing the program’s second straight A-Sun regular season title with a 7-1 league mark. He started 19 contests at defense, finishing with eight points on one goal and six assists. His assist total was good for fifth in the A-Sun.
Jones was named FGCU's Offensive Player of the Year in 2010, while earning NSCAA All-South Region second team honors. He tied the program single-season scoring mark with 17 points on seven goals and three assists.
All-time, Jones ranks fifth in points (28), while third in goals (9), game-winners (3) and assists (10). He is also tied for eighth all-time in games played (58) and 10th in games started (39). Jones was an ESPN Academic All-District 3 selection and an A-Sun All-Academic and Academic All-Conference honoree in 2010.
Besides holding a 3.42 cumulative grade-point average (GPA) as a dual major in Biology and Environmental Studies, Jones leads by example on the field and off as team captain. He is a three-year Eagles Council (SAAC) member, serving as the Vice President in 2011-12 and the President for his senior year. Jones also represents FGCU’s student-athletes on the Ethnic Diversity Committee, gathering information from fellow student-athletes in terms of viewpoints and experiences. He has also served as the Vice President (2010-11) and President (2011-12) of the Phi Eta Sigma Honor Society.
Each of the 30 candidate classes will be narrowed to 10 finalists midway through the regular season, and those 10 names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one male candidate and one female candidate who best exemplify excellence in the four Cs of community, classroom, character and competition.
FGCU will back in action Saturday when they host in-state foe UCF in a rematch of last year’s NCAA Tournament game. Kick-off at the FGCU Soccer Complex is slated for 7 p.m.
Senior CLASS Men's Soccer Candidates
Carlos Alvarez, Connecticut
James Belshaw, Duke
Ashton Bennett, Coastal Carolina
Steven Birnbaum, California
Scott Caldwell, Akron
Machael David, UC Santa Barbara
Johnny Dreshaj, Oakland
Shawn Ferguson, Charleston
Peyton Ford, North Carolina-Greensboro
Scott Goodwin, North Carolina
Anthony Hobbs, Florida International
Ryan Hollingshead, UCLA
Deion Jones, FGCU
Taylor Kemp, Maryland
Ryan McDuff, Brown
Brian McGue, Davidson
Peter McKeown, Loyola (Illinois)
Luis Ocejo, Stetson
Cameron Omsberg, Lehigh
Jannis Opalka, Siena
Liam Paddock, UMBC
Everett Pitts, UC Irvine
Dillon Powers, Notre Dame
Eric Schoenle, West Virginia
Yannick Smith, Old Dominion
Donnie Smith, Charlotte
Blake Smith, New Mexico
Bobby Thalman, Yale
Grant Van De Casteele, Notre Dame
Kyle Zobeck, Valparaiso