BATON ROUGE - The Cox Communications Academic Center for Student-Athletes honored six LSU student-athletes as part of their academic achievements and community service for January.
Each month, five student-athletes are recognized for their academic improvement, dedication and proven ability. In addition, one student-athlete is chosen through LSU's Student-Athlete Affairs program for their volunteerism and commitment to the community.
January's student-athletes of the month are Kelsey Carlsen [Track & Field], Rheagan Courville [Gymnastics], Keri Frankenberger [Women's Tennis], Barkevious Mingo [Football] and Chris Simpson [Men's Tennis]. Jeanne Kenney [Women's Basketball] was selected as the Shaquille O'Neal CHAMPS/Student-Athlete Affairs Athlete of the Month.
Carlsen is majoring in environmental engineering. Courville, Frankenberger, Mingo and Simpson are sport administration majors, and Kenny is a majoring in kinesiology.
A junior guard from Baton Rouge, La., Kenney shows superior team, academic and community effort. She concluded her sophomore season ranked 10th in the SEC in assists and has maintained that top 10 ranking this season. In recognition of her achievements within the classroom, Kenney earned a spot on the 2011 Freshman Honor Roll. Along with her teamwork and academics, she also dedicates much of her time to the Louisiana School for the Visually Impaired and to the Louisiana School for the Deaf, where she assisted in facilitating a free basketball clinic for its students. She also volunteers for Charlie's Place Respite Center and the Southside Gardens Retirement and Assisted Living Center.
Carlsen, a freshman track and field javelin athlete from Rome, Pa., joins the Tigers as the 2011 Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) Junior Olympics Silver Medalist in her event. As an elite prospect in the recruiting class of 2012, her 2011 outdoor season was concluded with a No. 6 ranking among throwers in her class, and the No. 22 javelin thrower among all classifications.
A sophomore all-around gymnast from Baton Rouge, La., Courville proved to be a standout performer in her debut season as a Tiger. She earned All-American First-Team accolades in both the vault and the all-around on top of All-SEC First-Team, All-SEC Freshman and was a three-time SEC Freshman of the Week selection. She was also recognized for her impressive work in the classroom, earning her a spot on the SEC First-Year Honor Roll. In this season's opener, Courville led the team to a victory and head coach D-D Breaux's 600th career win as she clinched the all-around, beam and floor titles of the meet against North Carolina State. Her hard work continues into the community as the gymnast participates in many service events, including Thanksgiving with the Tigers, St. Vincent de Paul's turkey carving contest and multiple visits to see the patients of Our Lady of the Lake Children's Hospital.
Frankenberger, a senior tennis player from Gainesville, Fla., begins her final season as a Tiger with honors both on and off the court. She made an instant impact on the team when she joined the Purple and Gold in 2012, earning SEC All-Freshman Team, All-SEC Second Team, Louisiana Freshman of the Year and All-Louisiana First Team selections all during her inaugural year. Her strong dedication to her team does not keep her from volunteering her time in the community, as her service earned her spot on the 2012 SEC Community Service Team.
A junior defensive end from West Monroe, La., Mingo has consistently been one of the SEC's most dominant pass rushers over the last three seasons. He picked up All-SEC Freshman Team honors in 2010 along with a pair of All-SEC Second-Team selections in 2011 and 2012. The star athlete was also awarded the Mike Miley Leadership Award and the Jimmy Taylor Award, recognizing his leadership, effort and performance. At the conclusion of the regular season, Mingo shared the Percy E. Roberts Outstanding Defensive Player Award with fellow defensive end Sam Montgomery. Off the field, Mingo is a standout in the community. Before departing for Atlanta to compete in the Chick-fil-A Bowl, he assisted delivering turkeys to the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank as part of the "Touchdowns for Turkeys" program.
Simpson, a sophomore tennis player from Derby, England, was an instant talent for the Tigers in his redshirt freshman season, after joining the team in January of 2011 and redshirting for the spring. His 14-8 singles and 14-11 doubles record earned him SEC All-Freshman honors, and he finished the season ranked No. 92 in singles. He kicked off 2012-13 with a No. 58 preseason singles ranking.
For putting forth extra effort in the classroom and community in addition to their rigorous academic and competition schedules, these six student-athletes will have their pictures displayed on the wall in the Cox Communications Academic Center for Student-Athletes.