March 3, 2006
Florida State freshman safety Myron Rolle was honored last weekend in Beverly Hills, California as he was named the winner of the 2006 Watkins Award. The Watkins Award is presented by the National Alliance of African American Athletes and is annually awarded to a high school student on the basis of academic achievement, athletics, and inolvement in the community. Rolle earned a 4.0 GPA at The Hun School (Princeton, NJ) and was listed at the No. 1 high school football player in the nation by ESPN. He enrolled at Florida State in January and plans to attend medical school.
“It’s a great honor to win the Watkins Award because of what it represents,” said Rolle. “To be regarded as the best male African-American scholar-athlete is something that means a lot to me. When you look back and see past finalists like Darius Walker, Shane Battier and Grant Irons you get a greater appreciation for what this award is all about.”
The other four finalists were Bryant Browning (Cleveland, Ohio), Terry Grant (Lumberton, Mississippi), Gerald McCoy (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma), and Jarrod Shaw (Lafayette, Louisiana). Past Watkins Award winners include Darius Walker (2004), Ronald Curry (1998) and Grant Irons (1997). Former FSU tailback Nick Maddox was a finalist in 1999 and linebacker Ernie Sims was a semifinalist in 2003. Other notable finalists were Shane Battier, LaVarr Arrington, Jason Capel, and Ted Ginn, Jr.
“In winning this award, I know that I must continue to do my part and work hard in the community, at school and on the football field,” said Rolle. “The Watkins Award represents a brotherhood of young African-Americans whose aim is to make a difference in society.”