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13th Annual Division I FCS ADA Scholar-Athletes of the Year Chosen

March 28, 2014

CLEVELAND – Brett Biestek, a defensive lineman from Fordham University and Austin Pucylowski, a punter from Southern Illinois University, have been chosen as the recipients of the 13th Division I Football Championship Subdivision Athletics Directors Association (FCS ADA) Scholar-Athletes of the Year.

Each will receive a $5,000 postgraduate scholarship. The duo was selected from a group of seven finalists. They will receive their awards during the Association’s annual membership meeting being held in conjunction with the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) Convention, being held at the World Center Marriott Resort in Orlando, Florida, June 9-12.

“Annually, the FCS ADA is tasked with selecting a pair of individuals from the Academic All-Star team to honor with postgraduate scholarships,” stated FCS ADA President Brian Hutchinson, director of athletics, Morehead State University. “This year we recognize and congratulate the efforts of both Brett and Austin. We wish these two young men well as they look to continue their postgraduate work."

photo courtesy of FordhamBiestek, a finance major who owns a 3.78 GPA, started all 13 games and finished the season with 58 total tackles, including 40 solo stops, 14.5 for loss and five sacks. In addition, he also had five quarterback hurries, four pass breakups, three fumbles recovered and a blocked kick. He was named to the FCS ADA All-Star team, was a first team All-Patriot League pick and first team Capital One Academic All-America selection. Biestek graduated in just three and a half years and has begun taking classes toward his MBA this spring.  

Pucylowski is working towards an undergraduate degree in biological photo courtesy of Southern Illinoissciences, owning a 4.0 GPA, with plans to attend medical school. On the field, Pucylowski led the Missouri Valley Football Conference (MVFC) in percentage of punts inside the 20-yard line (43%), while recording the second longest punt in school history, 72 yards. He earned all-MVFC honorable mention honors and was named a first-team conference all-academic pick. He is a two-time FCS ADA Academic All-Star team selection.

There were a total of 43 FCS players selected to the Academic All-Star Team in January.  Nominees were required to have a minimum grade point average of 3.20 (on a 4.00 scale) in undergraduate study and have been a starter or key player with legitimate athletics credentials. They must have reached their second year of athletics and academic standing at the nominated institution and have completed a minimum of one full academic year at the nominated institution. They must also have participated in 50 percent of the games played at their designated position.

A special Review Committee of Football Championship Subdivision athletics directors was responsible for selecting the All-Star team and Scholarship finalists. Completing this task were Brian Hutchinson (chair); Ken Beazer, Southern Utah; Charlie Cobb, Appalachian State; Ron Strollo, Youngstown State; and Jeff Tingey, Idaho State.

About the FCS ADA: Now in its 21st year, the Football Championship Subdivision Athletics Directors Association’s mission is to enhance Football Championship Subdivision football. For more information on the FCS ADA, please visit www.fcsada.com. The FCS ADA is administered by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA), which is in its 49th year. For more information on NACDA and the 13 professional associations that fall under its umbrella, please visit www.nacda.com.