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First Newton male soccer player to sign an athletic scholarship in over 15 years
Kenquavious McCollum is Newton High School’s first male soccer player to receive an athletic scholarship in over 15 years. McCollum received offers from the University of Georgia, Mercer University and St. John’s University. - photo by Javon Dickerson/The Covington News

It was a historic day for the Newton High School Soccer Program on Wednesday afternoon, as Kenquavious McCollum became the first male soccer player in over 15 years to sign an athletic scholarship.

Kenquavious has been playing varsity soccer at Newton for two years, and now he’ll be taking his talents to Oxford College of Emory University. His leadership skills and self-discipline has put him in a position to player soccer at the next level for free, and his coach is not surprised of his accomplishment.

“He (Kenquavious) was one of the guys that kept a consistent attitude and effort throughout the season,” Coach Lavon White said. “I love his attitude and the fact that I never had to worry about him in the classroom.”

The stereotype of most high school and college athletes being a “dumb athlete”, and not performing in the classroom like they do on the field, did not fit Kenquavious. As a matter a fact, he shattered that label with outstanding academic achievements.

McCollum is an honor graduate, due to having A/B Honor Roll for seven semesters of high school. He also is a top-10 scholar in his class, ranking at seventh with a 4.0 grade point average.

Lastly, he was accepted into schools like the University of Georgia, Mercer University and St. John’s University. His mother is nothing short of proud to know that she did a good job raising her baby boy.

“It makes me feel good that I’m doing my job as a mother to make sure he has his priorities in order, he knows that school comes first,” Kennisha Lewis said. “I’ve always instilled that in him ever since he was a little boy.”

This past year, Newton made the state playoffs, and that’s McCollum’s favorite memory from being on the team. He will be graduating with a lot of his teammates, and is thankful for the opportunity of playing soccer at Newton High.
“I’m going to miss everybody on the team and the coaches,” McCollum said. “But, I know that I love knowing that I gave everything that I had to my team.”