Rising Sophomore Nose Guard Bernie Sarra Wins The Admiral Mack Award
April 11, 2013
ANNAPOLIS, Md.-Rising sophomore nose guard Bernie Sarra (Monessen, Pa.) was named the winner of the Vice Admiral William P. Mack Award on Thursday afternoon in Bellino auditorium.
The Admiral Mack Award is presented to the most improved player during spring football drills as voted on by the coaching staff. It is the eighth time a defensive lineman and just the second time a nose guard has won it in the 38-year history of the award. The last nose guard to win the award was Enoch Blazis in 1986.
"Bernie Sarra had a great spring and the voting was near unanimous for the award," said Navy head football coach Ken Niumatalolo. "He really worked hard in the offseason and dropped the excess weight he was carrying and that hard work really paid off because he was a different football player in the spring. Bernie is going to be a key player for us this fall."
Sarra is currently listed second on the depth chart at nose guard behind rising junior Danny Ring. Ring will also see playing time at defensive end which will allow Sarra to see plenty of time at nose. Sarra also has the ability to play defensive end.
Sarra played in eight games as a freshman, including the final four contests of the year. He made his collegiate debut in the Mids' opener against Notre Dame. He played his best game of the year against Army, coming up with five tackles.
Sarra is a 2011 graduate of Greensburg Central Catholic High School and attended the Naval Academy Prep School during the 2011-12 academic year. Sarra was a three-sport standout who earned letters four letters in football, four in track & field and one in basketball. He was a two-time All-State and all-conference selection in football and was a member of the football team that finished as the state runner-up in 2009 with a 13-3 record.
The Admiral Mack Award was initiated in 1976 and is named in honor of Vice Admiral William P. Mack, the Naval Academy Superintendent from 1972-75, who was a strong supporter of the school's intercollegiate athletic program. Admiral Mack's widow, Elsie, was on hand to present the award to Sarra.