Three MIAA football players take home honors at Scholar Athlete Awards Dinner

For The Baltimore Sun
Five winners earn $4,000 scholarships at 53rd Annual Scholar Athlete Awards Dinner.

The 2015 football season was filled with awards and success for John Carroll quarterback Kurt Rawlings, and he added one more honor on Wednesday night.

Rawlings, The Baltimore Sun's All-Metro Offensive Player of the Year, was one of five winners of $4,000 scholarships at the 53rd Annual Scholar Athlete Awards Dinner held at Martin's West. Stephen Spanellis (Gilman), Bryan Costabile (Mount St. Joseph), Raekwon Wright (Patterson) and Matt Beveridge (Oakdale) were the other four winners.

The 69 players nominated for the awards were split into five regions at the dinner presented by The Greater Baltimore Chapter National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame. Rawlings was selected from the East region after a spectacular season senior that earned him The Sun's honor. He was also picked as the consensus Offensive Player of the Year in the state.

The 6-foot-3, 195-pound quarterback shattered Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association and Harford County records with 52 touchdown passes this year as No. 8 John Carroll finished 12-0. He threw for 3,438 yards and completed 72.8 percent of his passes and posted a 149.7 quarterback rating.

He'll be playing at Yale next year, and Rawlings said he was touched to receive this award.

"I didn't really expect it," Rawlings said. "I've been blessed this year. I expected a good season but we just took it one game at a time. All of this comes with hard work, and hard work leads to winning."

Two other MIAA players earned awards at this banquet. Spanellis (a right tackle at Gilman) served as a team captain and earned consensus all-league, All-Metro and All-State honors.

In addition, he's captain of the indoor and outdoor track teams and will be playing football at Michigan in the fall. Spanellis showed his Wolverine spirit by wearing a maize and blue tie featuring the Michigan logo.

"I think this is a great honor," said Spanellis, picked from the North region. "It's really nice to be recognized for all the hard work I put in over the last four years."

Costabile played quarterback for the Gaels and was a first-team all-conference pick as well as an honorable mention selection on the All-State team. The South region winner ranked second in his class and established a new school record for passing yards in one season.

Next year, Costabile will be playing lacrosse at Notre Dame.

"It's a huge honor," he said. "I'm extremely happy that I actually won it."

Wright, the Central region winner, started for two years at halfback and cornerback at Patterson. The senior still is not sure where he'll be going to college next year, and, like the others, didn't really think he had a chance to win.

"I was shocked," he said. "I was extremely happy that I won the award."

Gilman won the only team honor given out. The A. Paul Menton Award goes each year to the Baltimore area's top-ranked football team, and the Greyhounds earned it in Poggi's final year. They went 10-1 and won the MIAA A Conference championship thanks to an offense that averaged nearly 40 points per game and a defense which allowed less than 13.

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