It’s awards season at Rock M Nation, and we’ve got a lot to celebrate from the 2022-23 school year. New hires, postseason highs, incredible individual and team performances... There’s a lot of good things going on in CoMo, and we intend to talk about it.
And because we always strive to do things a bit differently around here, and because — let’s face it — I’m a bit extra, we’ve created our own award, the Rock M’my. Consider it to be part Emmy, part Espy, and all parts love of Mizzou Athletics. (pronounced Rock Emmy)
With the help of our team, we brainstormed award names and threw out some nominations. I encouraged them not just to consider the major sports and the top dogs, but to dig below the surface and select worthy nominees from all the teams. Luckily, our staff represents a diverse group of writers with knowledge about a variety of Mizzou sports, so this wasn’t too much of an ask. With each nomination, you’ll also find a bit of backstory, so you, the fans, can make an informed decision because at the end of each post, you’ll vote. Voting is open until July 4 at 7pm CST.
Once all the votes for each award have been tabulated, I’ll present a winners list, and that student-athlete will win our completely serious award that will undoubtedly be the greatest triumph of their lives thus far.
In case you missed the vote:
Teams don’t oftentimes win because of the contribution of one star. After all, there are five players on Norm Stewart Court and 11 on the field at Faurot during a game. And what happens when one falters? The object is still to win the game or match. So while we all bask in the glow of a Kobe 30-piece, another Keegan natty, and a perfect 10 from Jocelyn, we also should celebrate the others who stepped up in a big moment, and those who were on the sidelines leading their respective teams to victory.
Here are the nominees for Best Performance in a Supporting Role:
Sara-Rose Smith’s Double-Doubles
Without Smith’s double-doubles off the bench and overall game play off the bench, Mizzou would not have had the ability to even remotely contend on the boards. She led the team in rebounds per game with 6.7. Hayley Frank followed with 4.3. She recorded six off the bench including one to seal the deal in the first round of the WNIT against Illinois State. Her rebounding and overall impact on the team will be missed as she recently transferred to Colorado. -Lauren Rosenberg
Brian Smith’s 12th Straight
The Tiger Style Wrestling Squad led head coach Brian Smith to his 12th straight conference title (3-Big 12, 9-MAC). The Mizzou Wrestling team finished the 2023 Big 12 Championship by a 14-point margin over the second-place team Oklahoma State. The Tigers secured seven top-three finishes while sending all ten starters to compete in the NCAA Wrestling Championships -Matthew Smith
The Beam Queen (not the one you think)
Graduate student Alisa Sheremeta was the epitome of consistency for the Tiger gymnastics team this season, helping to lead the team with a quiet confidence in bars, floor, and beam. On the uneven parallel bars, she managed a 9.80 or higher in all events, including a 9.85 six times, and two 9.875s to rank fifth on the team.
On floor, Alisa was even more consistent, scoring 9.90 or above in 9 meets, including four 9.925 and a top score of 9.95. And then there was the balance beam, where, aside from a single fall in early February, she scored a 9.80+ in every other meet, including three 9.875, two 9.90, two 9.925 and a high of 9.95. After finishing third in the beam at the NCAA Las Angeles Regional, Sheremeta was selected as Mizzou’s lone qualifier for the NCAA Championships, and the future occupational therapist wrapped up her gymnastics career with a bang, earning Second Team All-American honors after fininshing with the third highest score of the afternoon session (13th overall). Her 9.925 is even more impressive when you consider it’s done in front of a panel of six judges, not the normal three. -Karen Steger.
A Vintage D’Moi Hodge Appears in the NCAA Tournament
Kobe Brown popped up as a nominee in our “I’m Him” category for his second-half performance in this game. And who am I to sit here and deny that Kobe Brown was, indeed, the chief reason Mizzou won its first tournament game in more than a decade?
But can we at least acknowledge that D’Moi Hodge, perpetually in the background of Kobe Brown’s effervescent greatness, came to cook against Utah State? As he did all season long? Hodge led Mizzou with 23 points, shot 50 percent from deep, grabbed three boards and four steals to one turnover against a feisty Aggie team. Without him, Mizzou might not have even been there in the first place. — Josh Matejka
Back-to-Back-to-Back Jacks vs. Cal
Now, did Mizzou end up ultimately losing the seminfinal game in the Norman Regional, thus ending their 2023 season? Yes. But does that matter? Absolutely not. The bottom of the lineup was a bit of a weak spot for Mizzou Softball this year, and Head Coach Larissa Anderson changed it up all season long trying to find the best mix. In what would be the last game of the season, down 5-0, the unlikely homerun-hitting duo of Maddie Gallagher (no. 1) and Megan Moll (no. 3) smashed first-pitch bombs, while Payton Jackson (also no. 1) followed on the third pitch of her AB. Without the contribution of the three, the Tigers wouldn’t have had a shot to tie it up in the bottom of the 7th. —Karen Steger
Nick Honor and Noah Carter Coming Up Clutch vs. Mississippi State
After back-to-back losses against Auburn and Texas A&M in mid-February, Missouri faced almost a “must-win” game against Mississippi State for their NCAA Tournament hopes in the final stretch of the season. Nick Honor and Noah Carter each scored 10 points, but they scored the most important points in this game — and maybe even the season. Trailing 62-60 with less than a minute left in OT, Carter hit a 3 to put Mizzou up 63-62 with 51 seconds left. Then, Honor hit the game-winning three-pointer with 7 seconds left for a 66-64 win.
This was a momentum changing win for the season as it started a streak of five consecutive wins — including their first trip to the SEC Tournament Semifinals in program history. As a result, Carter and Honor and two key veteran players returning next season. — Sammy Stava
Time to vote!
Best Performance in a Supporting Role
This poll is closed
Brian Smith’s 12th straight
Beam Queen Alisa Sheremeta
D’Moi in the Tourney
3x Homers vs. Cal
Nick & Noah vs. MS State