Monday, May 12, 2008

A&M-Commerce Athletes Graduating

29 people with ties to the athletic department at Texas A&M University-Commerce participated in commencement activities on Saturday, May 10th.

Athletic Trainer Kjerstin Gardner, Assistant Track and Field Coach Brian Stephenson and former cheerleader and track and field member Keri Taylor will earn their master's degree. Earning their bachelor degree will be women's basketball: Katedria Mosley, cheerleader Katherine Holt from football: Mialon Collins, Zech Donaldson, Trae Grimes, Orlando Hernandez, Jon Miller and David Wofford as well as manager, James Slayton; soccer: Cheryl Canavan, track and field: Britney Fisher and Rachel Redding; volleyball: Colleen Favaro and Jackie Orr; athletic trainers Brandi Coe, Jackie Fisher, John Hill, Taryn Moore and student assistants in the athletic department, Shelly Cervantes, Brent Lyday and Kevin Mosher. In addition, former men's basketball assistant coach Laytwan Slaughter, former football players, Cliff Edwards, Vernis James, Brandon Keeling and Kevin Mathis earned their bachelor's degree.

Mathis, who finished playing at A&M-Commerce in 1996, went on to have a successful career in the NFL playing for the Dallas Cowboys from 1997 to 1999, the New Orleans Saints from 2000 to 2001 and the Atlanta Falcons from 2002 to 2006. In his career, he made 269 tackles, recorded four sacks and picked off 11 passes for three touchdowns. Last year, he was selected among the 75 Greatest Players in the Lone Star Conference as the LSC celebrated its 75th Anniversary. At A&M-Commerce, he earned All-American recognition 12 times, a four-time all-LSC selection and was the named conference's Defensive Back of the Year as a senior.

Edwards, James and Keeling finished their playing days at A&M-Commerce in the fall of 2006. Edwards ended his career with 1,986 career yards rushing in two seasons. The 1,986 yards ranks eighth-best in school history. Edwards is currently a running back for the Wichita Wild in the Indoor Football League. James and Keeling were part of a Lions defense that ranked first in the LSC as a junior and as a senior in scoring defense. The Lions defense also ranked among the top two in passing and rushing defense both years.

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