Marshall's Cotton, McGill sweep state awards
"Voice of the Herd" named top sportscaster; "Word on the Herd" takes home sportswriter prize
HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – Marshall University swept the 2016 state award winners for the top sportscaster and sportswriter in West Virginia, the National Sports Media Association announced Wednesday afternoon.
Steve Cotton, the “Voice of the Herd” on the Thundering Herd/IMG Sports Network, was named the 2016 Sportscaster of the Year, as voted by state members of NSMA. It is the 11th time Cotton has been honored by the NSMA, which is based out of Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
Chuck McGill, who writes for HerdZone.com and is the editor of Thundering Herd Illustrated, is the 2016 Sportswriter of the Year in West Virginia. McGill spent the first half of 2016 as the sports editor of the Charleston Gazette-Mail before joining Marshall as the assistant athletic director for fan/donor engagement and communications. The award is McGill’s fourth consecutive state honor and fifth overall.
“I could not be more thrilled and proud to have true professionals like Steve Cotton and Chuck McGill representing our athletic department,” Marshall Director of Athletics Mike Hamrick said. “I’m happy the members of the NSMA recognize the talent they possess. They work hard and are very deserving of the recognition of being at the very top of their respective fields.”
Cotton joined the Marshall broadcasting team in 1993, and has been the primary MU athletics play-by-play man since 1996. The 52-year-old Michigan native won his first NSMA award – then known as the NSSA (National Sportscasters and Sportswriters Association) – in 1998. He also won in 2001, 2003-06, 2008-10 and 2014.
McGill, 36, joined the Marshall athletic department in July. He won his first state sportswriter honor in 2011 as the Marshall beat writer for the Charleston Daily Mail. He won again in 2013 and 2014 as the sports editor and columnist for the Daily Mail, and last year as the sports editor and columnist for the Gazette-Mail. He is only the third person in West Virginia history to win four consecutive Sportswriter of the Year awards.
Cotton and McGill will be recognized at the 58th annual NSMA awards weekend on June 25-26 in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
The NSMA will also tribute national winners and Hall of Fame inductees at the awards weekend. Legendary Los Angeles Dodgers play-by-play announcer Vin Scully is the National Sportscaster of the Year. The 89-year-old retired in 2016 after 67 seasons as the voice of Dodgers baseball. Sports Illustrated’s Tom Verducci is the National Sportswriter of the Year for the third consecutive time.
The organization will also induct four people into its Hall of Fame: ESPN’s Linda Cohn, the late Frank Gifford, sports journalist Sam Lacy and newspaper columnist/author Mike Lupica.