Two Eastern Kentucky University football players – Graham Ashkettle and Samuel Hayworth – were chosen to the 2019 Academic All-America® Team, as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).

Ashkettle and Hayworth were second team selections.  EKU was the only school in the Ohio Valley Conference to have players on the Academic All-America® Team. 

The duo are the first Colonel football players chosen as Academic All-Americans® since Danny Copeland was a second team honoree in 1987.  They are the first OVC football players to be honored since 2017.  It is only the second time ever two football players from the same OVC team earned Academic All-America® recognition in the same year.

Ashkettle, a 6-foot-4, 300-pound redshirt sophomore offensive lineman, has a perfect 4.0 GPA while majoring in chemistry. 

Graham Ashkettle. Courtesy EKU Athletics

The Crestwood, Kentucky native earned second team All-OVC honors.  He started 10 times at right tackle for an offensive line that helped EKU rush for 2,468 yards, the second-most in the past 17 seasons by an Eastern Kentucky team.  The Colonels led the OVC and ranked 20th in FCS football with 205.5 rushing yards per game.  He started on the offensive line against Tennessee State and aided a running attack that churned out 379 yards, averaging nine yards per rush.  Over the final six games of the season, Ashkettle and the offensive line allowed only three sacks.

Samuel Hayworth. Courtesy EKU Athletics

Hayworth, a 5-foot-11, 180-pound redshirt senior kicker, carries a 3.96 GPA while pursuing a master’s degree in public health.  He made 18-of-22 field goals and all 37 point-after attempts on his way to earning first team all-conference honors. 

The two-time OVC Specialist of the Week ranked ninth in the nation with 1.50 field goals per game and 14th in the country in field goal percentage (81.8 percent).  Hayworth led the conference in scoring at 7.6 points per game.  The Ormond Beach, Florida native was chosen as the STATS FCS National Special Teams Player of the Week (Nov. 25) after scoring a program record 17 kicking points at Jacksonville State.  He also tied Eastern’s mark of five field goals in a game at JSU.
To be nominated for Academic All-America honors, a student-athlete must carry at least a 3.3 cumulative grade-point-average (on a 4.0 scale) for his/her career.  No athlete is eligible until he/she has reached sophomore athletic and academic standing at his/her current institution.

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Kevin Britton

Assistant Athletics Director for Communications & Branding


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