Adairsville native, Niagel Curtis, named NAIA All-American
WALESKA, Ga. - Niagel Curtis has been named an American Football Coaches Association NAIA Second Team All-American, the first in the history of Reinhardt's football program. The award was announced Tuesday by the AFCA. Curtis (photo, No. 22) had a spectacular season for the Eagles. In helping to lead Reinhardt to a 9-2 overall record and the program's first-ever appearance in the NAIA Football Championship Series, the Adairsville, Ga., native finished the regular season as the NAIA's leader in rushing touchdowns with 26, the best in school history. Curtis averaged 86.6 yards per game on the ground and set a program record with 953 net rushing yards
"We're really happy for Niagel that he received this recognition," said RU head coach Drew Cronic. "Niagel was a big reason that we had the success we did, but he'd be one of the first guys to tell you that he wouldn't have had the success he did if not for his offensive line making blocks or his teammates pushing him even harder."
Reinhardt’s season included wins over then 10th-ranked Faulkner University and Lindsey Wilson College who was No. 1 in the nation at the time. The Eagles lost in opening round of the NAIA national playoffs to No. 4 University of Saint Francis (IN), 37-26. Curtis was one of about 25 student-athletes that frequently returned to Reinhardt during the summer to continue working in the weight room to get stronger. "Niagel and [team captain] Nate Holton came back over the summer and just kept pushing each other to get better. Nate had a really great season that I wish had been recognized as well. But Niagel getting in shape to be able to perform for us on a weekly basis was really important, both to him and to us." Curtis was the second representative from Reinhardt to be honored by the AFCA this season. Last week, coach Cronic was named NAIA Region 1 Coach of the Year.
Story provided by the Reinhardt University Sports Information Department. Curtis is one of dozens of 'Athletes Beyond Bartow' contributing and competing at either the collegiate or professional level. See our Athletes Beyond Bartow page on this site.