Gridiron Vikings Earn All-American Status

CONTACT: Jeff Foley (518) 629-8085 or (518) 373-1262
FOR RELEASE: Immediate, Wednesday, December 6, 2000

Hudson Valley's Derrick Black
And Shawn Miller Honored

     The National Junior College Athletic Association this week singled out a pair of Hudson Valley Community College football players for the biggest postseason honor of all. Cornerback Derrick Black (Tarboro, NC) was named a First Team All-American; wide receiver Shawn Miller (Troy) was an Honorable Mention selection.

     Image of Derrick BlackBlack, a second-year player who is currently being courted by Division I schools such as Georgia Tech, South Carolina, North Carolina State, Temple and Marshall, is Hudson Valley's first All-American student-athlete since Ted Fornicola was named in 1996. Prior to Black and Miller, five Vikings had secured All-American status since 1990.

     Black recorded eight interceptions this year and established Hudson Valley's career mark with 12 in two seasons. The Northeast Football Conference (NFC) 2000 Defensive Player of the Year, Black anchored a defense that allowed only 73 yards passing per game. He contributed 25 tackles, nine pass breakups and returned kickoffs, averaging 22.2 yards per return.

     Among the school records Black holds are: Longest interception return (98 yards vs. Dean Community College), most interception return yards in a season (303), most interception return yards in a career (392), most interceptions returned for a touchdown in a career (two).

     Image of Shawn MillerMiller, a freshman, exploded onto the Hudson Valley football scene, burning Lackawanna Junior College for four catches for 177 yards and two touchdowns in his debut game. His yardage total fell just three shy of Hudson Valley's single-game record. Then, fighting double coverage most of the year, Miller finished the 2000 campaign with 33 receptions for 649 yards and seven touchdowns. He was named a First Team All-NFC performer.

     Miller recorded 11 receptions against Navy Prep in 2000, setting a Hudson Valley single-game record. He holds two of the top three single-game yardage marks and his 19.7 yards per catch is the second-best in school history.

     Miller, who has had a tryout with the Cincinnati Reds, plans to pitch for Hudson Valley's baseball team in the spring.

     Hudson Valley's football program was established in 1969. At the time, Hudson Valley was one of only two junior colleges in New York to field a varsity football team. Since then, nearly 300 Hudson Valley football players have earned scholarships to four-year schools and 15 have gone on to play professionally. The Vikings competed in the Coca Cola Bowl in Iowa in 1980. In 1996, Hudson Valley posted an 8-0 record, part of dominant stretch that included 15 straight victories. Under the direction of head coach Bob Jojo, the Vikings were 6-3 in 2000.