Zach Bunney to receive Tech’s Ed Simonich Award

Zach Bunney will receive the Montana Tech 2016 Ed Simonich Award, Oredigger coach Chuck Morrell announced today.

The Ed Simonich Award has been given annually since 1966 to a senior student-athlete on the football team. The award is given to the student-athlete who represents what it means to be an Oredigger both on and off the field. Ed Simonich was Montana Tech’s athletic director and head football coach from 1957-1965.

“Zach has been one of the true class-acts of Oredigger football over the last four years,” Morrell said. “Not only has he been outstanding for Tech on the field and in the classroom, he has also displayed unparalleled work ethic and mental toughness.”

Bunney, a Butte native and Butte High grad, was a wide receiver, running back and kick returner for the Orediggers. The 5-foot-7 utility man finished his career with the Orediggers with more than 2,000 all-purpose yards and scored on the ground, through the air and on kick returns.

One of the most prolific kick returners in Oredigger history, Bunney averaged nearly 30 yards per return this past season and 24 yards per kick return last season. Bunney nearly set a school record as a junior returning a kick 93 yards against Eastern Oregon last year. He set the school and tied the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) record this fall returning a kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown, also against Eastern Oregon.

“I am very appreciative for having had the opportunity to coach this young man and know that he will undoubtedly be successful in the next phase of life,” Morrell said.

Bunney was a captain for the 2012 Butte High School State Championship team and ran track for the Bulldogs.

Bunney will be honored at the Montana Tech Hall of Fame and Awards Weekend next fall.

— Montana Tech