Guilford's John Macon Smith Wins Prestigious ODAC Honor

John Macon Smith '14 (John Bell photo, www.touchalifephotography.com)
John Macon Smith '14 (John Bell photo, www.touchalifephotography.com)

FOREST, Va. – Guilford College's John Macon Smith earned the Old Dominion Athletic Conference's (ODAC) prestigious Harry G. "Doc" Jopson Award, the league office announced Monday.

The annual award is given to the ODAC's top male senior student-athlete according to a vote of the league's Board of Directors. Smith is Guilford's first recipient of the Jopson Award since the Quakers joined the league in 1991-92. Allison Raney '92 received the ODAC's 1992 Marjorie Berkley Award, which is given to the league's top senior female student-athlete.

The announcement marks yet another significant award for Smith, who last week garnered First Team Capital One Academic All-America® NCAA Division III baseball honors from the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). The 6-2, 205-pound first baseman became the Quakers' eighth Academic All-American® in school history and the second to earn first-team laurels. He is Guilford's first baseball player so honored by CoSIDA's Capital One Academic All-America® program.

A two-time Capital One Academic All-District® 5 honoree, Smith concluded a brilliant three-year career with the Quakers in April. He became the fifth baseball performance all-American in school history with his selection to the American Baseball Coaches Association's (ABCA) Third Team NCAA Division III All-America squad. He earned First Team All-ODAC baseball recognition and was named the league's Farm Bureau Insurance Baseball Scholar-Athlete according to a vote of the league's sports information directors.

Smith earned All-South honors from the ABCA and from D3baseball.com for the second time in his career this spring. The two-time First Team All-ODAC selection led the Quakers with a .459 batting average, a .531 on-base percentage, 44 runs, 68 hits, and 13 stolen bases in 38 games. Smith smacked eight doubles, four triples and six homers. He finished second on the team with 40 runs batted in (RBI) and a .689 slugging percentage. Through games of May 27, Smith ranked seventh among NCAA Division III batting average leaders, ninth in on-base percentage, 28th in slugging percentage, 33rd in runs per game, and 45th in hits. He totaled a team-high 23 multiple-hit contests, 10 multiple-RBI games and accumulated a 14-game hitting streak in 2014. Smith reached base at least once in all 38 games.

In three Guilford seasons, Smith recorded a .417 batting average with 23 home runs and 124 RBI. He set the school's career record for hits per game (1.63). Smith ranks second in school history in batting average, sixth in runs (125), and sixth in RBI. He was named to five all-region teams, three All-ODAC squads and twice received the league's Baseball Scholar-Athlete Award in his illustrious career.

Smith graduated in May with high honors and a 3.83 grade point average. The dean's list accounting major was a six-time member of Guilford's Student-Athlete Honor Roll and a three-time Academic All-ODAC selection. He was recognized for outstanding achievement by an accounting student at Guilford's 2014 Awards Convocation and has a summer internship with McGladrey LLP. Smith also won Guilford's 2014 English Athletic Leadership Award, the school's top athletics honor. He will pursue a master's degree at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in the fall.

Smith helped coach Nick Black's '02 club to a 19-20 overall record, 9-11 in the ODAC. Black could have as many as 27 returning letter winners next season.

The Jopson Award is named in honor of the Bridgewater College professor and coach who retired in 1981 following 45 years at the Virginia school. Dr. Jopson, who initiated and directed the Eagles' cross country and track programs, led his teams to ODAC indoor track titles in 1979, 1980 and 1981, and outdoor crowns in 1978 through 1981.