May 1, 2014

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MARTIN, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin seniors Heather Butler, Jasmine Newsome, Jeremy Butler and Ben Johnson brought home Athlete of the Year awards this evening at the ninth annual Senior Student-Athlete Night in the Duncan Ballroom at the Boling University Center.

Butler and Newsome shared the Bettye Giles Female Athlete of the Year accolades while Butler and Johnson split the Bob Carroll Male Athlete of the Year honors. Butler and Newsome helped the Skyhawk women’s basketball program reach unprecedented heights during their tenure at UT Martin, as the Skyhawks earned four trips to the NCAA Tournament and became just the fourth Ohio Valley Conference program to capture four straight OVC Tournament titles. Meanwhile, Butler and Johnson put together quite the resumes in their Skyhawk careers, both earning All-American accolades and helping UT Martin post another winning season and earn a spot in the national polls for three weeks.

The 5-5 Butler wrapped up her remarkable career as the OVC’s all-time leading scorer with 2,865 points (ranking 16th in NCAA history). She ranked ninth in the nation in scoring with 23.6 points per game while her 392 career three-pointers ranks first in NCAA history. The Medina, Tenn. native was selected as the OVC Player of the Year, a Senior CLASS Award All-American first teamer, a final five finalist for the Nancy Lieberman Award, nominee for the All-State WBCA Good Works team, a CoSIDA Capital One Academic second team All-American and an OVC Scholar-Athlete.

Newsome ranks just behind Butler in OVC scoring history with 2,566 points. A two-time OVC Player of the Year and three-time OVC Defensive Player of the Year, the Millington, Tenn. product averaged 19 points, 5.7 assists, 3.6 rebounds and 2.7 steals per contest in 2013-14, earning the third OVC Tournament Most Valuable Player accolade of her remarkable career. She was named a finalist for the Nancy Lieberman Award and a member of the Naismith Trophy Watch List while also racking up National All-Mid-Major Player of the Year by College Sports Madness.

Butler was the Skyhawk football team’s most consistent offensive weapon in 2013. He tallied at least 90 receiving yards in nine games, seven of which came against OVC opposition. He was responsible for five 100-plus yard receiving games (including a season-high 171 yard effort in a win at Austin Peay) and had three multi-touchdown performances. Overall, the 6-3, 205-pound wide receiver out of Bradenton, Fla. ranked sixth in the nation in receiving yards (1,203) and seventh in receptions per game (7.5) while ranking fourth in the OVC in touchdown receptions (10) and fifth in all-purpose yards (106.67 per game).

A Primm Springs, Tenn. native, Johnson led the OVC in tackles for the second straight season, piling up 102 tackles (8.5 per game). The 6-2, 235-pound linebacker racked up double-digit tackles in five games, including a season-high 12 stops in back-to-back wins over Central Arkansas and Southeast Missouri. He added 12.5 tackles for loss – exactly half of his career total – to go along with three sacks, an interception and five passes defended in 2013. His 330 career tackles rank seventh in program history.

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