Neosho native and current Pittsburg State Gorillas junior football player Cody Holland has been announced as a 2012 first-team All-MIAA honoree, along with nine other Gorillas.
Holland earned his spot on the first-team after turning in a standout season at offensive tackle. He was a second-team selection in 2011.
“I’m very fortunate to have won it,” Holland said. “I know in the conference there are a lot of good offenses and a lot of good offensive linemen. I’m very blessed to get this award.”
A 2008 NHS graduate, the 6’6, 337 pound junior helped the Gorillas to a 7-3 regular season record in 2012. After redshirting in 2009, Holland started five of the 12 games he played in for the Gorillas during the 2010 season.
He started all 14 games for the Gorillas in 2011 while helping lead the team to the Division-II National Championship. Holland also picked up All-MIAA and All-Region honors that season.
Under head coach Shawn Flannigan, Holland helped lead the Wildcats to an 8-4 record in his senior season and was selected first-team All-State. He was twice selected All-Conference during his career at NHS.
Holland’s hard work continues to pay off. The desire to represent his hometown and make it proud has helped drive his success, he says.
“One thing I always continue to try to do is, I want to make my hometown proud,” Holland said. “Week to week we put in a lot of hard work. The result of the season wasn’t what we had planned this year, but just being there from week to week, no matter what happened on the weekends, we just came back and worked hard.
"Even with a few setbacks, that didn’t stop us from working our butts off and working hard to get back to where we were last year.”
Joining Holland on the first-team is fellow Gorilla Nate Dreiling. Gus Toca made the second-team while Aaron Kolich, Andrew Castaneda, Anthony Abeoja, Joe Uzzel, Keeston Terry and Jason Peete were honorable mention. Holland credited his teammates for the selection.
“These individual awards really are team awards,” he said. “Without everybody out there with me, the hard work I put in with the help of others in practice, we couldn’t get these awards. I have to throw in there that I love my coaches. I couldn’t be happier with my decision (to attend Pittsburg State).”