Every Commonwealth college and university, including NCAA Division I, II, and III, NAIA, and independents, had the opportunity to submit athletes to be honored. To be eligible, student-athletes were required to have a cumulative grade point average of 3.25 or better. The student must have achieved sophomore status, and he or she could not have been in the first season of competition at their current school.
Barr, a native of Lurgan, Northern Ireland, graduated in May with a bachelor's degree in public health and a perfect 4.0 GPA. She was named the 2016 Zag Field Hockey National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) Division I National Scholar Athlete, as well as a CoSIDA Academic All-America® At-Large second team honoree. On the field, Barr was voted to the 2016 Longstreth/NFHCA Division I All-America second team, becoming the second All-American in program history.
Hansel was named to the Big South All-Academic Team following his career-best 19th-place finish at the 2016 Big South Cross Country Championships. The junior from Powassan, Canada owns a 3.96 GPA as an exercise science major.
A redshirt junior offensive lineman from Hillsville, Va., Holder earned several academic honors this past year. He was named Big South Scholar-Athlete of the Year and earned spots on the CoSIDA Academic All-District™ Team and the FCS ADA Academic All-Star Team. After completing his undergraduate degree in government with a 3.69 GPA, Holder owns a 3.92 GPA during his master's degree studies in public policy: public administration.
Proehl, who graduated in May with a 4.0 GPA in zoology, joined Barr, Rabe and Winstead as Liberty's George A. Christenberry Award honorees. As a senior, the Kingston, Ohio native placed 18th at the Big South Cross Country Championships and came in fifth in the Big South 10K final, helping the Lady Flames capture team titles at both meets.
Like Holder, Rabe needed only three years to complete a bachelor's degree in global studies aviation, maintaining a 4.0 GPA throughout. A native of Newbury, Ohio, Rabe was voted Big South Scholar-Athlete of the Year at the 2017 Big South Indoor Track & Field Championships. She also earned All-Big South medals for the pole vault both indoors and outdoors in 2017.
Winstead graduated in May as a double major in government and international business with a 4.0 GPA. The Raleigh, N.C., native was named to the FCS ADA Academic All-Star Team and to the STATS FCS All-America third team roster as a long snapper during the 2016 season. After completing 100 percent of his snaps for the second consecutive season, Winstead was a first team All-Big South honoree.
Liberty's 2016-17 VaSID Academic All-State Team Honorees Name, Class, Hometown, Cumulative GPA, Major, Sport Serena Barr, Sr., Lurgan, Northern Ireland, 4.00, Public Health, Field Hockey Graham Hansel, Jr., Powassan, Canada, 3.96, Exercise Science, Men's Cross Country/Track & Field Lucas Holder, R-Jr., Hillsville, Va., 3.69 (UG)/3.92 (G), Government (UG)/Public Policy: Public Administration (G), Football Jessie Proehl, Sr., Kingston, Ohio, 4.00, Zoology, Women's Cross Country/Track & Field Audrey Rabe, Jr., Newbury, Ohio, 4.00, Global Studies Aviation, Women's Track & Field Hunter Winstead, Jr., Raleigh, N.C., 4.00, Government and International Business, Football