Overall Player of the Year (MVP) & Offensive Player of the Year
Allen University’s quarterback David Wright led the SIAC in passing yards this season, throwing for 3,171 yards and 19 touchdowns, averaging 335 yards per game and completing 58% of his passes. He also rushed for four more scores and 235 yards on the ground, helping Allen to their best season in history with a 7-3 record.
Defensive Player of the Year
Benedict’s Loobert Denelus, a three-year starter, is the anchor of the nation’s #1 defense in scoring and yards per game. Ranked #4 in Sacks and #2 in Tackles for Loss nationally, Loobert is 7th in the country in Sacks and leads the SIAC, and 16th in the country in Tackles For Loss, ranking 6th in the SIAC.
Freshman of the Year
Frederick Gaines, a freshman running back for the Albany State Golden Rams, emerged onto the scene in game 3, significantly improving the team’s offense and rushing attack, leading them to an appearance in the 2023 SIAC Football Championship game. Gaines has rushed for over 500 yards on less than 100 attempts this season, averaging 5.1 yards per carry, and has scored 6 touchdowns for the Golden Rams.
Newcomer of the Year
Fort Valley State’s Brandon Marshall, leading the league in rushing, has been a standout Newcomer in the SIAC. Named SIAC Newcomer of the Week twice, he finished with 893 yards on 193 carries, averaging 89.3 yards per game and 4.6 yards per carry, with 8 touchdowns. Marshall posted four 100-yard games and had at least one reception in 8 of the 10 games, totaling 1,064 yards on 214 touches and 9 TDs.
Coach of the Year
Chennis Berry, the head coach of the Benedict College Tigers, has been named SIAC Coach of the Year. Under his leadership, the Tigers have had their second undefeated season, going into the championship game with a 10-0 overall record and 8-0 in the SIAC.
The Elite 14 Award, presented to the student-athlete with the highest GPA amongst same-sport conference nominees, goes to Tuskegee’s sophomore running back Jude Servius, who boasts a 4.0 GPA.