Skyhawks rising senior defensive lineman is lone NE-10 representative among football student-athletes recognized for charitable involvement and community service contributions
EASTON, Mass. (July 16, 2015) – Stonehill College rising senior defensive lineman Nick Chiocco (Mansfield, Massachusetts/Mansfield) has been named one of a record 197 nominees for the 2015 Allstate American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Good Works Team, which recognizes student-athletes whose charitable involvement and community service contributions stand out among all others participating in the sport.
It marks the second straight year Stonehill has had a Good Works nominee after recent graduate and All-American Brian Harrington '15 represented the College last season. Chiocco is also the lone nominee from the Northeast-10 Conference among the Combined Divisions nominees from NCAA Football Championship Subdivision, Division II, III and the NAIA.
Since its inception in 1992, the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team highlights the "good" taking place off the football field. The select group of student-athletes nominated for this award by their respective colleges and universities are able to balance academics and athletics while remaining committed to helping others and bettering their communities.
While remarkable on the field performances are praised each weekend, these individuals' off the field accomplishments far exceed touchdowns and tackles. Comprised of 11 players from the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision and 11 players from the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision, Divisions II, III and the NAIA, the final roster of 22 award recipients will be unveiled in September. From the nominees submitted by sports information directors across the nation on behalf of their schools, a special voting panel consisting of former Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® members and prominent college football media members will select the 2015 Good Works Team.
Chiocco, who has appeared in 13 career games over his three year career, has an impressive list of charitable and community service endeavors to his credit. He will host his third annual Home Run Derby to benefit the Hearts for Hope Foundation in memory of Fallon Finnegan, a classmate at Mansfield High School, who passed away from cystic fibrosis in 2010 at the age of 16. Chiocco's Home Run Derby has raised nearly $5,000 over the first two years and his third annual event is scheduled for Saturday, August 1, at noon.
Chiocco also helped plan, execute and host a charity benefit concert for Sabrina Kelly, the daughter of Stonehill criminology instructor Pamela Kelly, which raised $3,000 for medical expenses and was held just days before Sabrina's passing from cystic fibrosis in April. Chiocco has also volunteered his time with the Special Olympics of Massachusetts and Team IMPACT, while also participating in Relay for Life for six straight years and the 33rd Annual Massachusetts Shriners All-Star Game following his senior year of high school.
Chiocco has been named to the Northeast-10 Commissioner's Honor Roll three times for having a semester grade point average of 3.0 or higher over his Stonehill career. He earned Scout Team Player of the Week honors during the 2014 season and finished the season with a career-high four tackles (three solo), including a forced fumble, as part of a Stonehill defensive unit which led the NE-10 for total defense (284.0 yds allowed/gm), passing defense (189.3 yds/gm) and rushing defense (94.7 yds/gm), while ranking second for scoring defense (19.6 ppg). He enters his senior season with seven career tackles (four solo), including 2.0 tackles for a loss of five yards and the one forced fumble.
Stonehill, which posted a 5-6 overall record in 2014, including a 4-5 mark in the Northeast-10, opens its 2015 season with a non-conference matchup at Bloomsburg (Pa.) University, an NCAA Tournament participant last season, on Saturday, September 5, at 2 p.m. The Skyhawks home opener is two weeks later when it hosts Pace University for an NE-10 matchup at W.B. Mason Stadium as part of Stonehill Kickoff Weekend and Presidents' Cup Celebration on Saturday, September 19, at 6 p.m.