Buckeye Valley senior Jack Grote has certainly been recognized for his work on the football field, earning All-County, All-Conference and All-District accolades last fall.
Monday, though, during the Scholar-Athlete Awards Banquet for the Columbus Chapter of the National Football Foundation (NFF) and College Hall of Fame, it was his academic aptitude being honored as Grote was one of 13 area players — Liberty’s A.J. Motika was another — receiving awards.
Grote, who represented the Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference Red Division, is the first Buckeye Valley player to be honored at the banquet, which has been held annually for 50 years. Motika was the honoree for the Ohio Capital Conference Cardinal Division.
BV coach Mike Marshall said he couldn’t think of a better representative from the MOAC than Grote, who currently holds a 4.2 GPA, scored a 33 on his ACT and is a member of the National Honor Society.
“Jack was a great captain for us,” he said. “He is a leader on and off the field. He usually lives in the weight room, but he found time this summer to tutor his teammates almost on a daily basis. He just does everything the right way and it’s great to see him honored at such a prestigious event.
“Coach (Urban) Meyer was there, coach (John) Cooper was there, Archie (Griffin) was there … it’s really a big deal,” Marshall added.
In addition to Grote and Motika, Ohio Wesleyan University’s Chad Williams and Ohio State’s Andrew Sweat were honored for their academic achievements.
The NFF and College Hall of Fame is a member-supported non-profit organization dedicated to ensuring the future of amateur football at local, state and national levels. The foundation with its chapters annually awards nearly $1 million in scholarships to over 3,000 high school and college student athletes for continuing education.