Skyhawks’ Yesipov one of six OVC Scholar-Athlete Award winners
Posted: Thursday, December 18, 2008 2:02 pm
The award is the highest individual honor that can be earned by OVC student-athletes and is given annually to three men and three women student-athletes of junior or senior status for their accomplishments in both the classroom and athletic arena, and because of their leadership qualities.
The six winners were selected from a group of 19 finalists by a vote of OVC Faculty Athletics Representatives. Honorees must have performed athletically with distinction, earned at least a 3.25 grade point average and conducted themselves in a manner which has brought credit to the student-athlete, his or her institution, intercollegiate athletics and the OVC.
Yesipov, a management information systems and computer science major from Zhukovsky, Russia, has been a mainstay for head coach Dennis Taylor for the last three seasons and is primed to finish his career strong in 2009 after garnering All-OVC Second Team Honors last season.
In 2008, Yesipov finished the season with an 8-10 singles record, including a 7-4 OVC record in leading the Skyhawk men’s team to the OVC Tournament semifinals. As the season went on, Yesipov was arguably the OVC’s hottest player, as he went almost a full month without being beaten at No. 2 singles, going 6-0 in that stretch.
For his career, Yesipov is 25-23 in singles and 18-11 in OVC singles play.
This isn’t the first time that Yesipov has been recognized for his efforts off of the court. Yesipov was one of just nine OVC tennis players to receive the OVC Medal of Honor in 2007-08, as he earned a 4.0 GPA. Yesipov is also a two-time member of the OVC Commissioner’s Honor Roll, winning the award as a sophomore in 2006-07, and last season as a junior. Currently, Yesipov holds a 3.82 GPA.
“Andrey is a quiet, unassuming young man that leads by example and not by words,” said Taylor, who will enter his 22nd season at the helm this spring. “The men’s tennis program has always had high standards when it comes to academics, but Andrey has raised the bar even higher. His presence on the UT Martin campus has made our team and our university better. The players and I are excited that Andrey has been chosen to receive the OVC Scholar-Athlete Award.”
Yesipov is a member of the Phi Kappa Phi honor society, the Upsilon Pi Epsilon international honor society and the Student-Athlete Advisory Council. Yesipov earned the Faculty Scholar Award and has volunteered with numerous organizations and events, including “Shoes for Souls”, “Santa Cop”, “Can Caravan” food drive, and the UTM Blood Battle.
The award was also given to Lesley Binning (cross country/track and field; Jacksonville State), Carrie Burggraf (track and field; Austin Peay), Amber Guffey (women’s basketball; Murray State), Brian Morrell (baseball; Eastern Illinois), and Bradley Thompson (football; Tennessee Tech).