UC’s Cox named All-American

PARKERSBURG — Former Parkersburg South first-team all-stater Logan Cox was recognized for his hard work as a student-athlete at the University of Charleston as the defensive back was named to the 2016 Academic All-America Division II football first team, which is selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).

“I had asked my coach (Pat Kirkland) midseason; I knew my grades were decent and I asked him what it takes to be an academic All-American,” said Cox, who carries a 4.0 GPA and is nearing completion on his chemistry degree and his minor in biology.

“I asked if I had to sign up and he said it’s more of a voting system for the coaches. At the end of the season, I ended up getting all-conference (Mountain East all-academic). I wasn’t expecting anything, but the option was there it could happen. I was excited about it.”

Kirkland admitted he’s not had a first-team CoSIDA Academic All-American in his tenure and was more than pleased Cox was his first.

“It’s a great accomplishment,” said the UC head man. “It’s not like he’s taking easy courses. He’s in classes I struggle to pronounce the names of them. He’s always been a highly-driven individual since he stepped foot on campus and he’s very highly motivated.”

Although Cox is a senior academically, he will return for his final year of football eligibility next fall for the Golden Eagles. Playing mainly at bandit, but also moving to free safety when needed, Cox finished with 40 tackles and two interceptions this season.

“Definitely, we didn’t meet our expectations,” Cox said of UC’s 3-8 campaign, which featured five straight losses before a season-ending 17-10 home victory against Virginia-Wise. “We had a lot of talent on the team and we thought we were going to be in good standing in the conference.

“I don’t know if it was a lack of chemistry or what. I love the guys I played with and I wouldn’t change anything but our record obviously. But things just didn’t come together. I’m going to stay and play my last year of eligibility next fall and with the extra time, I’m going to pick up a business minor.”

Coach Kirkland added, “Logan’s a gutsy kid who has played through some injuries and with all the work he’s put in, I’m keeping my fingers crossed for that young man that he has the best season individually and as a team.

“We’re blessed to have him back for another season. He does so much for us on the field, making checks and audibles for us and putting us in a good position. My goal is to make him a better player between now and next August and he’s excited about it all.”

The ex-Patriot has been working on his senior research paper and will spend next semester presenting it at Charleston’s Academic Showcase.

“It’s where senior level students give their presentation on what they have done their senior year,” Cox added. “It’s kind of like a job fair and you present for companies.”

Cox — who was originally offered a scholarship by Akron coming out of Parkersburg South after he had verbally committed, but it was pulled about three weeks before signing day — missed the 2015 season with a torn PCL muscle in his left knee.

While this season didn’t go as planned, Cox is hoping his final go-round with the Golden Eagles will go a lot better next year.

“It was nice to send the seniors out with a victory,” Cox said of beating Wise. “We were on a five-game losing streak and it’s definitely not fun playing the game of football and losing. It was good to come together as a team finally at the end of the season.”