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Cross Country’s Tony Hayes Honored with C-USA Postgraduate Scholarship

Tony Hayes has been awarded the Jim Castañeda Postgraduate Scholarship Award by the Conference USA
June 20, 2017

Conference USA Release

IRVING, Texas—William “Tony” Hayes has been awarded the Jim Castañeda Postgraduate Scholarship Award by the Conference USA, the league office announced on Tuesday. Hayes is Marshall’s recipient of the scholarship awarded annually to one student-athlete from each of the conference’s 14 member schools.

This is the ninth year the award has been named for Dr. Castañeda, who served Rice University for 46 years as an educator, coach and Faculty Athletics Representative before he passed away in November 2008. The conference annually awards the $4,000 Postgraduate Scholarships to graduates as selected by the C-USA Faculty Athletics Representatives and approved by the Board of Directors.

“Winning the Jim Castañeda Postgraduate Scholarship is so exciting and such an honor,” Hayes said. “I cannot thank Dr. [Karen] McComas enough for nominating me; a huge thanks to Conference USA as well for selecting me as the recipient of this scholarship.”

“Just when I thought Marshall University had given me everything in the world, Dr. McComas nominated me for this scholarship and I’ve found myself benefiting from Marshall University again,” Hayes said. “I can’t even express how wonderful Marshall and Conference USA have been to me. I’m also thankful for my great friend and assistant coach Caleb Bowen for writing a letter of recommendation for me. The same thank you goes to my wonderful cell biology professor Dr. Valluri for also writing me a letter of recommendation.”



Hayes competed in all meets for the Herd in 2013 and 2015-2016, earning varsity letters each year. At the 2016 C-USA Cross Country Championship, Hayes ran his career-best 8K with a time of 25:55.7.

The Fairmont, West Virginia, native earned his bachelor’s in pre-med with a minor in chemistry and a notable GPA of 3.94. Hayes was named to the C-USA Cross Country All-Academic Team the past two years, is a three-time C-USA Academic Medal Recipient and was named to the C-USA Commissioner’s Honor Roll three times.

Hayes will be attending the Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine.

“Tony Hayes is a true testament of what being a student-athlete entails,” assistant coach Caleb Bowen said. “Ever since his first practice with us Tony gave 100 percent to this team and 110 percent to his studies. He was one of the hardest workers I’ve ever worked with and I’m truly going to miss his work ethic and dedication to excellence. I hope that the younger guys on the team will take after Tony and strive to be great on the cross country course and in the classroom. I’m so proud of everything he’s accomplished and I’m happy to see him get this award.”

2017 Jim Castañeda Postgraduate Scholarship Recipients

Lee McNeil, Football, Charlotte

Bianca Biglione, Women’s Tennis, Florida Atlantic

Samantha Green, Softball, FIU

Natalie Moran, Softball, Louisiana Tech

Tony Hayes, Cross Country, Marshall

Max Linder, Football, Middle Tennessee

Amy Henard, Volleyball, North Texas

Christian Wirth, Men’s Soccer, Old Dominion

Katherine Ip, Women’s Tennis, Rice

Danielle Block, Softball, Southern Miss

Catherine Ragon, Women’s Tennis, UAB

Anthony Rotich, Men’s Cross Country, UTEP

Geonte Jackson, Baseball, UTSA

Micah Jones, Women’s Basketball, WKU


“The money from this scholarship will help out so much this upcoming year when I start medical school,” Hayes said. “I’m beyond grateful. I just want to thank my family, friends, teammates, coaching staff, and faculty that have helped me along the way become the athlete and student that qualified me to receive this scholarship. I am because we are.”