Mitch Credle, a man of many talents and a former athlete, receives the 2023 Pigskin Club Award of Excellence at Pryzbyla Center on the campus of Catholic University on Feb. 24. (Roy Lewis/The Washington Informer)
Mitch Credle, a man of many talents and a former athlete, receives the 2023 Pigskin Club Award of Excellence at Pryzbyla Center on the campus of Catholic University on Feb. 24. (Roy Lewis/The Washington Informer)

In a successful night of celebrating athleticism and scholarship, Pigskin Club of Washington held its annual Fall Sports Awards Banquet on Feb. 24 at the Pryzbyla Center on the campus of Catholic University.

The organization, believed to be the first among Blacks in this country of its kind, was formed to honor the achievements of high school and college athletes and coaches as well as community influencers. It was founded in 1938 and has grown to include an All-Academic team. In its growth, the organization was able to include spring sports five years ago. The highlight of this year’s event was the recognition of Caleb Williams, the first-ever Heisman Trophy winner from the DMV to be so recognized. A winner of the top high school award three years ago, Williams, who attends the University of Southern California, was not able to attend. However, the winner provided an inspirational message to the athletes in attendance via video.

“I am honored to accept this prestigious award from the Pigskin Club,” said Williams, who is completing his sophomore year and who prepped at the District’s Gonzaga College High School. “The key to my success has been a strong work ethic that was instilled in me by my parents and my coaches at Gonzaga. But one of the most important things that I can leave with you is to make sure that you incorporate service in the lives of others. It is important.”

The ceremony boasted yet another special awardee in Nyckoles Harbor, who just signed to attend the University of South Carolina as the top two-sport athlete in the country. Harbor, who ran track and played football at Archbishop Carroll in Washington, D.C., was also named to the All-Academic team.

“This is such a great honor to be recognized for your accomplishments,” said Harbor. “It means a lot to not only myself, but to these other athletes here tonight.”

There were MVPs named in several of the fall sports including volleyball, field hockey, golf, cross country and soccer along with the coach of the year awards in those respective sports.

The All-Met football team was very impressive as most of the awardees have already committed to such football powers as Ohio State, the University of Maryland, Penn State, Morgan State and Alabama among others. Darryl Overton of Freedom-Woodbridge High School was named coach of the year for high school football.

On the college side along with Williams, Rakim Garrett of the University of Maryland received the Frank P. Bolden Awards for the All-Metropolitan Football Player of the Year and his coach, Mike Locksley, who attended Ballou High School, was the All-Metropolitan Coach of the Year after leading the Terps to a bowl victory. In a special category, Shaquanda Gainey (offense) and Narcesca Arzu (defense) of the Divas football team were named Outstanding Professional Players of the Year.

In the community service category Miles Rawls, of George Goodman Basketball League, Marvin Tucker, of One City All-Star Extravaganza (OCASE) Foundation, and Lloyd Mayes, of DM-Athletes in Action, Inc. were honored for their work.

Perhaps the most intriguing awardee of the night was Mitch Credle. Credle is a former decorated homicide detective in the city, a former athlete, high school basketball coach, novelist, filmmaker, entrepreneur and teacher, specializing in behavioral science.

“If there is one thing I would like to leave the athletes here with is, what happens when the air is out of the ball?” challenged Credle. “It is going to happen. Trust me. It is good that you have these God-given talents and you want to pursue your dreams in sports. But it is important that you prepare for when the air goes out of the ball.”

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  1. Thanks for awarding a coach like Mitch he has been making a difference in kids life for a long time .

  2. This article was very well written with a lot of love for this organization we will carry this touch to keep are athletes of excellence working hard.
    Thanks so much Deacon Hank Lloyd

  3. Great honor brother Mitch, well deserved years of hard work and dedication keep climbing the heights.

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