The list of academic honors for former Northwestern State offensive lineman Chris Zirkle expanded again Wednesday.
Zirkle, who completed his career in November, was one of 11 Southland Conference student-athletes named to the National Football Foundation’s Hampshire Honor Society, which honors college football players who embody the traits of scholar athletes.
It is the second time in the past year the National Football Foundation has honored Zirkle, who was named a semifinalist for the National Football Foundation’s William V. Campbell Trophy in September.
The NFF’s Hampshire Honor Society is comprised of players who completed their final year of eligibility in 2019 and achieved at least a 3.2 grade point average throughout their undergraduate studies, met all NCAA- or NAIA-mandated progress toward degree retirements and were either starters or significant contributors throughout the 2019 season.
A four-year starter who played his final season as a graduate student, Zirkle earned his undergraduate degree in business administration with a 3.83 grade point average and holds a 4.00 GPA while pursuing a master’s degree in homeland security at NSU.
Zirkle started 39 games in his Demon career, including the final 16 after missing the first seven games of the 2018 season while recovering from shoulder surgery. He was a second-team All-Southland Conference selection along the offensive line and earned Academic All-Southland Conference honors as well as being a CoSIDA Academic All-Region pick.
A League City, Texas, native, Zirkle was a member of the FCS ADA Academic All-Star and was a finalist for one of two FCS ADA Postgraduate Scholarships as well as the STATS FCS Doris Robinson Scholar-Athlete Award.
Photo: Zirkle in action against Midwestern State. Credit: Gary Hardamon/NSU Photographic Services