Bowker, the sports editor at The Vicksburg Post, wrote a column celebrating a year of their “Athlete of the Week” feature. Despite some initial apprehension, the feature took off and readers voted for winners in weekly online polls for over 33 weeks. The winners represented 10 different sports and included high school, college, and youth athletes from Warren County, Tallulah, and Port He Gibson. The feature will be on hiatus until August when the new sports year begins. Bowker invites suggestions for how to improve and evolve the contest and thanks the readers for making it a success.
The column includes a list of all the 2022-23 Athletes of the Week, including their sport and school. 34 local athletes were recognized and 101 nominees were nominated. While there were no repeat winners, 24 players were nominated multiple times. Porters Chapel Academy’s Jace John earned the most nominations with five. Vicksburg’s Tyler Henderson and Amari Johnson, PCA’s John Wyatt Massey, and St. Aloysius’ Hendricks Eldridge each received three nominations. The feature served the dual purpose of recognizing outstanding achievements and spotlighting them across the sporting arena.
Ernest Bowker has been a member of The Vicksburg Post’s sports staff since 1998 and is one of the longest-serving reporters in the paper’s 140-year history. He has received over 50 awards from the Mississippi Press Association and the Associated Press for his coverage of local sports in Vicksburg.