June 12, 2012
Photo Gallery | Video Feature
CINCINNATI - Eleven current and former University of Cincinnati football players earned their degrees on June 8-9 at the the 193rd Commencement of the University inside Fifth Third Arena.
Alex Apyan (Chattanooga,Tenn./Hixson), Dominique Battle (Boca Raton, Fla./American Heritage), Armon Binns (Pasadena, Calif./Pasadena), T.J. Franklin (Maryville, Tenn./Knoxville Catholic), Reuben Haley (Cincinnati, Ohio/Mt. Healthy), Brendon Kay (Marine City, Mich./Marine City), Danny Milligan (Cincinnati, Ohio/St. Xavier), Jared Rains (Aliquippa, Pa./Hopewell), Wesley Richardson (Columbus, Ohio/Olentangy Liberty), J.K. Schaffer (Cincinnati, Ohio/LaSalle), George Winn (Southfield, Mich./U. of Detroit Jesuit) were among the Bearcats who graduated.
Schaffer, the 2012 American Eagle Outfitters BIG EAST Football Scholar Athlete of the Year, was one of nine cum laude graduates among 49 UC student-athletes who took part in the ceremony. Franklin earned his master's degree in criminal justice.
Binns, currently playing for the Cincinnati Bengals, returned to UC in the offseason to earn his degree in criminal justice with a minor in sociology.
“I’ve been in Cincinnati for so long and to come away with a degree is going to mean the world to me and my mom,” Binns said. “I was a student-athlete again so it’s all good.”
Nine student-athletes, Tom DeTemple (Cincinnati, Ohio/Moeller), Steve Hancock (Sterling, Va./Potomac Falls), Tomaz Hilton (Youngstown, Ohio/The Rayen), Alex Hoffman (Indianapolis, Ind./Cathedral), John Hughes (Gahanna, Ohio/Lincoln), Randy Martinez (Teaneck, N.J./Teaneck), Shane Popham (Crestview Hills, Ky./Covington Catholic/Wake Forest), Rob Trigg (Dayton, Ohio/Chaminade-Julienne) and Orion Woodard (Pompton Lakes, N.J./Pompton Lakes), previously earned degrees over the past year.
Battle, Kay, Milligan and Winn each have a year of eligiblity left and will enroll in graduate programs and play for UC this fall.
The football program put together an outstanding academic year that saw the Bearcats' overall team GPA for the fall quarter finish at a 2.73, a significant improvement over the in-season GPA of 2.69 the Bearcats posted in the fall of 2010. Forty-three student-athletes achieved a 3.0 GPA or better while 23 student-athletes earned spots on the Dean's List, with quarter GPAs of 3.4 or above. Twenty-three members of the 2011 team earned spots on the Academic All-BIG EAST squad.