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During the Big Ten's celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, the conference will be featuring "Medal of Honor Mondays" for 12 consecutive weeks, which will highlight a number of Medal of Honor winners from each school. This week, we feature the University of Minnesota.
Jim Brewer (1973, basketball)
Brewer earned the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1973. He ranks among Minnesota's career leaders in several categories, ranking first in rebounding average (12.09) and third in rebounds (907). He was named the Big Ten-Chicago Tribune MVP in 1972 after helping guide the Gophers to the Big Ten Championship. Brewer was also tabbed first-team All-Big Ten in 1973, All-Big Ten honorable mention in 1972 and was a second-team All-Big Ten selection in 1971. During his final season at Minnesota, he was named to the U.S. Basketball Writers Association All-America first team. The three-time Minnesota MVP was also a member of the 1972 U.S. Olympic Team. A first-round draft pick of the Cleveland Cavaliers in 1973, Brewer played nine seasons in the NBA and was a member of the 1982 Los Angeles Lakers NBA Championship team. He is the uncle of former NBA player and current Los Angeles Clippers head coach Doc Rivers.
Uta (Herrmann) Wolfe (1992, swimming)
Wolfe, a recipient of the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1992, was a four-time Big Ten Champion for Minnesota. She was named an All-American and Academic All-American in 1992. Currently, she is an assistant professor at St. Thomas University, St. Paul, Minn. Her academic interests include interaction between the senses and vision-motor control, or the way movements are guided by vision. She recently discovered a new multi-sensory illusion.
George MacKinnon (1929, football)
MacKinnon was an All-America center for Minnesota and earned the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1929. Following his playing career, he served as an assistant coach for the Gophers from 1929-31. Afterwards, he served as a U.S. Navy officer during World War II. He became an attorney involved in high-profile labor racketeering cases and later a politician. MacKinnon served on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia from 1969 until his death in 1995.
Carol Ann Shudlick (1994, basketball)
A 1994 recipient of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, Shudlick led Minnesota to its first NCAA Tournament appearance in her senior season and was named the Wade Trophy winner and Big Ten Player of the Year that same year. Shudlick ranks in the top 10 in numerous Gopher categories, including second in scoring (2,097), seventh in blocks (84) and steals (173), and eighth in rebounds (727). She was a two-time All-American, three-time All-Big Ten selection and Academic All-Big Ten honoree. Following her collegiate career, Shudlick played professionally overseas and in the ABL. She was inducted into the "M" Club Hall of Fame and was honored on the NCAA's list of 209 student-athletes named "NCAA Women's Basketball's Finest."
Michael J. Polich (1975, hockey)
Polich, who earned the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1975, helped lead Minnesota to its first NCAA championship in 1974. The Hibbing, Minn., native paced the Gophers in scoring for three straight seasons, tallying 159 career points (70 goals, 89 assists) in 149 career games. As a senior in 1974-75, Polich was named a first-team All-American after notching 25 goals and 62 points. He went on to play in 226 games in the NHL, including three seasons with the Minnesota North Stars.
Cassie Busse (2004, volleyball)
Busse earned the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 2004. She led Minnesota to four-straight NCAA Tournaments, including the national semifinals in 2003, where she was named to the Final Four All-Tournament Team. Busse was a two-time All-American, Academic All-American and first-team All-Big Ten honoree, and earned Academic All-Big Ten recognition three times. The opposite side hitter was the 2003 Big Ten Player of the Year and guided the Gophers to their only Big Ten Championship in 2002. The Shakopee, Minn., native ranks seventh in kills (1,502) and eighth in attack percentage (.294) and aces (168) in the Minnesota record book. Following her collegiate career, Busse joined the U.S. national team in 2005.
During the Big Ten's celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, the conference will be featuring "Medal of Honor Mondays" for 12 consecutive weeks, which will highlight a number of Medal of Honor winners from each school. This week, we feature Michigan State University.
Shawn Horcoff (2000, hockey)
Before embarking on a career in the National Hockey League that now includes more than 800 games played, Horcoff was a model student-athlete in East Lansing. He was awarded the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 2000, the same year that he was named a first-team All-America selection. Horcoff, who was also a three-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree, currently plays for the Dallas Stars and eclipsed the 450-point plateau for his career this season.
Greg Kelser (1979, basketball)
Kelser, who earned the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1979, was the leading scorer and rebounder on Michigan State's 1979 NCAA Championship team. He was the first Spartan to score more than 2,000 points and collect at least 1,000 rebounds in his career. Kelser's 2,014 points rank fourth at Michigan State and his 1,092 rebounds are second all-time. In 1979, he earned All-America honors, was a first-team All-Big Ten selection and was named to the Wooden Award All-America Team. He also collected Academic All-America honors in 1979. Kelser was a first-round draft pick of the Detroit Pistons and played six seasons in the NBA. He is the lead analyst for the Pistons on Fox Sports Detroit and also serves as a college basketball analyst on BTN. Kelser earned the Michigan State University Distinguished Alumni Award in 2004 and was inducted into the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame in 2006.
Val Sterk (1997, volleyball)
One of the most decorated student-athletes in Spartan volleyball history, Sterk earned the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1997. She was a four-year letterwinner for Michigan State from 1993-96, leading the Spartans to three NCAA Tournaments and a share of the Big Ten title in 1996. Sterk was the National Co-Player of the Year in 1995, a two-time first-team All-American (1995-96), a third-team Academic All-America honoree (1996) and a three-time first-team All-Big Ten and Academic All-Big Ten selection (1994-96). She has left her mark in Michigan State's record book, ranking in the top 10 in nine different career categories, including first in attack percentage (.379) and block solos (128). She led the Spartans in hitting efficiency and solo blocks every year of her career. Following her time in East Lansing, Sterk went on to compete on the U.S. National Team from 1997-2000 and was inducted into the Michigan State Athletic Hall of Fame in 2007.
Allyssa DeHaan (2010, basketball)
DeHaan earned the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 2010 and currently ranks third in NCAA history with 503 career blocks. She holds four of the top 10 spots on the conference's single-season block list, including the top two spots. She was a four-time All-Big Ten selection, four-time All-Defensive Team pick and a three-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree. DeHaan was tabbed Big Ten Freshman of the Year in 2007 and Defensive Player of the Year in 2010, the same year she earned AP honorable mention All-America status. In addition to her defensive prowess, she ranks fourth in Michigan State history in points (1,649) and fifth in rebounds (919). In 2011, DeHaan enrolled in Grand Valley State's post-graduate physician's assistant program and joined the Lakers' volleyball team.
Kelly Miller (1984, hockey)
Miller, who earned the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1984, tallied 164 points (82 goals, 82 assists) during his 165-game collegiate career. As a senior captain in 1984-85, Miller led the Spartans to a school-record 38 wins and was named a First-Team All-American and Hobey Baker Award finalist. Miller went on to play in more than 1,000 games during a 15-year career in the NHL. He completed his MBA at Michigan State in 1995 and returned to his alma mater as an assistant coach in 2011.
Robert Jasson (1958, hockey)
Jasson, who earned the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1958, tallied 34 points from the blue line between 1955-56 and 1957-58. Named the team's Most Valuable Player at the conclusion of the 1956-57 campaign, Jasson helped lead the Spartans to their first winning record in program history in 1957-58. A native of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Jasson was a two-year captain for Michigan State, wearing the "C" in 1956-57 and 1957-58. He was just the second two-year captain in program history.
Jenilee Rathje (2012, volleyball)
A 2012 recipient of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, Rathje was a four-year letterwinner for Michigan State, leading the Spartans to three NCAA Championship appearances. She ranks first in Michigan State history in matches (142) and sets (496) played. She is also eighth in kills (1,486) and block assists (332) and 10th in total blocks (366). The Mount Pleasant, Mich., native was named third-team All-America and an Academic All-American in 2011. Rathje was a two-time first-team All-Big Ten selection and three-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree. She was twice named MVP of the Spartans in 2010 and 2011. Rathje currently coaches volleyball at Notre Dame Preparatory School and Marist Academy in Pontiac, Mich.
During the Big Ten's celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, the conference will be featuring "Medal of Honor Mondays" for 12 consecutive weeks, which will highlight a number of Medal of Honor winners from each school. This week, we feature the University of Michigan.
Carl Hagelin (2011, hockey)
Before opening a successful career with the New York Rangers of the National Hockey League over the past two seasons, Hagelin stood out both on the ice and in the classroom in Ann Arbor. He was awarded the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 2011, the same year that he was named a second-team All-America selection. Hagelin was also a three-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree while pursuing a degree in sport management. He recently earned a silver medal with Sweden at the Sochi Olympic Games.
Beth Wymer (1995, gymnastics)
A 1995 recipient of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, Wymer was a three-time Big Ten Gymnast of the Year and became the first female gymnast inducted into her university's Hall of Honor. She won four conference titles in the all-around, leading the Wolverines to team championships each year, and three NCAA titles on uneven bars. She earned a master's degree in kinesiology and has counseled clients in nutrition, lifestyle and personal training.
Paul Goebel (1923, football)
Goebel, a 1923 Big Ten Medal of Honor winner, was the first to wear jersey No. 1 for the Wolverines. He was a captain of the 1922 Michigan team that won the Big Ten Championship and earned the honor of scoring the first Wolverine points in Ohio Stadium when he kicked a field goal on Oct. 21, 1922. He was a lieutenant commander on a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier in World War II, ran a sporting goods store, officiated Big Ten football and served as mayor of Grand Rapids, Mich. He was also influential in the political career of President Gerald Ford.
Alison Noble (1984, volleyball)
A 1984 recipient of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, Noble was a four-year letterwinner for Michigan. She led the Wolverines to their first Big Ten Championship in 1981, where she was named to the Big Ten All-Tournament team. Noble was a two-time AIAW All-Region honoree in 1980 and 1981 and an Academic All-Big Ten selection in 1983. The computer engineering major graduated summa cum laude and was inducted into the M-Women Academic Hall of Fame in 1985.
Andrea Williams (1985, volleyball)
Awarded the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1985, Williams was the first Michigan female student-athlete to play a varsity sport while attending graduate school. The Scarborough, Ontario, native completed a Ph.D. program in world politics while competing for the Wolverines in 1984 and 1985. Williams led Michigan in assists, hitting percentage, kills and solo blocks in both seasons she competed, along with being named an Academic All-Big Ten selection. In 1985, she was named honorable mention All-Big Ten, while also leading the Wolverines in digs, total blocks and sets played. Prior to her time at Michigan, Williams competed for the Canadian national team.
Jon Jansen (1999, football)
Winner of the 1999 Big Ten Medal of Honor, Jansen was a two-time All-Big Ten performer at Michigan and helped lead the Wolverines to a national title in 1997. Serving as captain during his junior and senior seasons, Jansen earned All-America status as a senior, while also garnering Academic All-Big Ten accolades in 1997 and 1998. Following his collegiate career, Jansen was drafted in the second round of the 1999 NFL Draft by the Washington Redskins and became a model of consistency during his 10-year career. He started 125 of the 137 games in which he played and was named a second-team All-Pro in 2005.
During the Big Ten's celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, the conference will be featuring "Medal of Honor Mondays" for 12 consecutive weeks, which will highlight a number of Medal of Honor winners from each school. This week, we feature the University of Iowa.
Matt Whitaker (1993, football)
A 1993 recipient of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, Whitaker was a tight end for the Hawkeyes' most recent Rose Bowl team. A three-year letterwinner for Iowa from 1990-92, he earned Academic All-Big Ten status in those three years as well. He is a former U.S. Attorney. Whitaker, a Republican, is a candidate for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Democrat Tom Harkin in 2014.
Andre Woolridge (1997, basketball)
Woolridge, who was the first player in Big Ten history to lead the conference in scoring and assists in the same season, won the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1997. He was a first-team All-Big Ten selection and was named a third-team All-American by the Associated Press his senior season after averaging 20.2 points and six assists per game. After graduating from Iowa in 1997, the Omaha, Neb., native enjoyed an extensive career playing professional basketball overseas. He was inducted into the Nebraska High School Sports Hall of Fame in 2007 and the Nebraska Black Sports Hall of Fame in 2011.
Dee Ann Davidson (1985, volleyball)
A 1985 recipient of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, Davidson was Iowa's first women's volleyball player to earn the distinction. Davidson was twice named MVP for the Hawkeyes and led Iowa in blocks for three seasons. She also led the conference in digs per game in 1984. She was a two-time All-Big Ten honoree and was tabbed an Academic All-American in 1984. The two-time CoSIDA District VII All-American graduated with a degree in accounting with high distinction and a 3.85 GPA. She was named to the President's list four semesters and Dean's list six semesters, and later was named to Iowa's Academic All-Decade team.
Penn State's John Urschel and Nebraska's Kelsey Robinson were named finalists for the Sullivan Award on Friday, which recognizes the nation's premier amateur athlete.
A 2013 Big Ten Medal of Honor recipient, Urschel garnered back-to-back first-team CoSIDA Academic All-America honors in 2012 and 2013 and Academic All-District honors for three straight years. A team co-captain and a key component to one of the Big Ten's most productive offenses the past two years, Urschel claimed Associated Press third-team All-America honors. A two-time first-team All-Big Ten guard, Urschel paved the way for three straight 1,000-yard rushers and helped the Nittany Lions to winning seasons in all four years of his career.
Robinson played and started in all 33 matches for the Nebraska volleyball team, totaling 530 kills and averaging 4.45 kills per set for the 2013 season. She led the Big Ten in kills and points per set during the conference season and ended her senior year ranked ninth in hitting percentage, second in kills, and fifth in aces in the Big Ten. She was honored as the AVCA/Sports Imports Player of the Week and was named to the 2013 AVCA First-Team All-American and First Team North Region.
First presented in 1930, the Sullivan Award honors an athlete who demonstrates the qualities of leadership, character, sportsmanship, and the ideals of amateurism. The winner will be announced at an awards ceremony on Friday, April 11 at the AAU National Headquarters in Orlando, Fla.
Big Ten schools on Monday revealed a breakdown of their opponents for
the 2014-15 Big Ten volleyball season. The 14 Big Ten teams will
compete in an 20-game conference schedule, playing seven teams both home
and away and six teams once. Each team will play 10 home and 10 away matches.
Below is the
breakdown of each team's single play opponents. Dates, times and
television information will be announced at a later date.
Home: Maryland, Minnesota, Purdue
Away: Iowa, Michigan State, Penn State
Home/Away: Indiana, Michigan, Nebraska, Northwestern, Ohio State, Rutgers, Wisconsin
Home: Ohio State, Penn State, Wisconsin
Away: Iowa, Maryland, Northwestern
Home/Away: Illinois, Michigan, Michigan State, Minnesota, Nebraska, Purdue, Rutgers
Home: Illinois, Indiana, Purdue
Away: Michigan, Minnesota, Rutgers
Home/Away: Maryland, Michigan State, Nebraska, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Wisconsin
Home: Indiana, Michigan, Michigan State
Away: Illinois, Ohio State, Wisconsin
Home/Away: Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, Penn State, Purdue, Rutgers
Home: Iowa, Minnesota, Northwestern
Away: Maryland, Purdue, Rutgers
Home/Away: Illinois, Indiana, Michigan State, Nebraska, Ohio State, Penn State, Wisconsin
Home: Illinois, Minnesota, Wisconsin
Away: Maryland, Ohio State, Penn State
Home/Away: Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska, Northwestern, Purdue, Rutgers
Home: Iowa, Nebraska, Rutgers
Away: Illinois, Michigan, Michigan State
Home/Away: Indiana, Maryland, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue, Wisconsin
Home: Northwestern, Ohio State, Purdue
Away: Minnesota, Rutgers, Wisconsin
Home/Away: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Michigan State, Penn State
Home: Indiana, Rutgers, Wisconsin
Away: Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio State
Home/Away: Illinois, Iowa, Maryland, Michigan State, Minnesota, Penn State, Purdue
Home: Maryland, Michigan State, Northwestern
Away: Indiana, Nebraska, Purdue
Home/Away: Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Penn State, Rutgers, Wisconsin
Home: Illinois, Michigan State, Rutgers
Away: Indiana, Purdue, Wisconsin
Home/Away: Iowa, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, Ohio State
Home: Michigan, Ohio State, Penn State
Away: Illinois, Iowa, Nebraska
Home/Away: Indiana, Maryland, Michigan State, Minnesota, Northwestern, Rutgers, Wisconsin
Home: Iowa, Michigan, Nebraska
Away: Minnesota, Northwestern, Penn State
Home/Away: Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan State, Ohio State, Purdue, WIsconsin
Home: Maryland, Nebraska, Penn State
Away: Indiana, Michigan State, Northwestern
Home/Away: Illinois, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio State, Purdue, Rutgers
Michele Robinson became the first Penn State female to collect the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1992. A four-year letterwinner for the Nittany Lions, Robinson's teams compiled a 140-18 (.890) record during her collegiate career, winning conference championships in 1988, 1989 and 1990. She was a two-time Academic All-Big Ten selection. Following her collegiate career, Robinson spent four years in the U.S. Navy, where she competed nationally and internationally on the All-Navy and All-Armed Forces Volleyball Team.
During the Big Ten's celebration of the 100th Anniversary of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, the conference will be featuring "Medal of Honor Mondays" for 12 consecutive weeks, which will highlight a number of Medal of Honor winners from each school. This week, we feature the University of Illinois.
Illinois All-Century Team - (1949/1963, men's basketball)
Illinois' Dike Eddleman (1949) and David J. Downey (1963) were both named to the Illini's All-Century Basketball Team. Eddleman was a two-time All-Big Ten selection, led the team in scoring in 1948 (13.9 ppg) and 1949 (13.2 ppg) and helped the Illini win the Big Ten Championship in 1949. Downey was a first-team All-Big Ten honoree, led the team in scoring and rebounding from 1961-63 and guided his team to the Big Ten Championship in 1963. Downey currently ranks No. 21 among Illinois' all-time scoring leaders with 1,360 points (18.9 ppg). Downey later went on to found The Downey Group (high quality life insurance, long term care, disability programs, and related planning for affluent individuals, families, and businesses), and is Chair of the Investment Policy Committee at University of Illinois Foundation Board and member of University of Illinois College of Business Board of Overseers.
Dee Brown (2006, men's basketball)
Brown won the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 2006 following a stellar four-year career at Illinois. The Maywood, Ill., native won the Bob Cousy Award as the nation's top point guard as a senior in 2006, along with collecting Consensus Second-Team All-America honors. In 2005, Brown led the Fighting Illini to the national championship game and was named the Sporting News National Player of the Year and a Consensus First-Team All-American. Brown collected first or second-team All-Big Ten honors all four years of his career and was a two-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree. He was named a finalist for Illinois' Male Athlete of the Year in 2006 and was also recognized as a Senior CLASS Award finalist.
Don Laz (1951, track & field)
A seven-time Big Ten Champion for the Illini from 1949-51, Laz was also the 1951 NCAA pole vault champion. He won three straight indoor conference crowns in the pole vault and swept that event and the long jump in the 1951 Big Ten Indoor and Outdoor Championships. He won the silver medal in the pole vault at the 1952 Helsinki Olympics. Laz later became an architect before a stroke cut short his career. His best height was 15-3, or two inches less than the vault by his son, Doug, in setting an Illinois high school state record in 1972.
Ashley Berggren (1998, women's basketball)
Berggren, a 1998 recipient of the Big Ten Medal of Honor, was the first Illinois women's basketball player to have her jersey retired in 2009. Berggren ranks in Illinois' top 10 of numerous career categories, including second in points (2,089), seventh in assists (328) and 10th in rebounds (779) and steals (183). The Big Ten Player of the Year in 1997, she guided the Illini to a Big Ten Championship and back-to-back NCAA Sweet 16 appearances in 1997 and 1998. She is the only Illini to be named first-team All-Big Ten in three seasons (1996-98). Following her collegiate career, Berggren played professionally with the Chicago Condors of the ABL before becoming a high school special education teacher and basketball coach. She also has run the Berggren Hoop Camp for the past 15 years.
Jonelle Polk (1987, women's basketball)
Awarded the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 1987, Polk has left her mark on Illinois basketball, ranking in the top 10 of various Illini career records, including first in field goals made (815), third in points (1,984), field goal percentage (.562) and double-doubles (40), fourth in rebounds (933) and fifth in blocks (135). She led Illinois in scoring, rebounding and blocked shots in three of her four seasons and was a three-time All-Big Ten selection (1985-87). Polk was tabbed a Fast Break All-American and Illinois' Female Athlete of the Year in 1986 and led the Illini to NCAA Tournament appearances in her final two seasons. Following her graduation, the Peoria, Ill., native played overseas for four years, before returning to the U.S. to get her masters' degree and delve into coaching. She currently works as a manager at Proctor Recreation Center in her hometown mentoring young girls
Trent Meacham (2009, men's basketball)
Meacham, who earned the Big Ten Medal of Honor in 2009, scored 866 points, handed out 231 assists and recorded 74 steals during his career at Illinois. A co-captain during his senior year, Meacham led the Illini and ranked second in the Big Ten in three-point field goal shooting at 42.1 percent during the 2008-09 season. He currently ranks fifth at Illinois in career three-point field goal percentage (.408) and 11th in three-point field goals made (178). The Champaign, Ill., native was a three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection and won the Lou Henson Courage Award in 2009. He graduated with a bachelor's degree in sport management and is currently in his second season with JSF Nanterre of the LNB Pro A in France.
Disa Johnson (1988, volleyball)
A 1988 Big Ten Medal of Honor recipient, Disa Johnson led the Illini to a 124-28 record in her four seasons. She guided Illinois to three NCAA Championship appearances, including the national semifinals in 1987, and a pair of Big Ten titles (1986-87). The setter ranks second in Illinois history in assists (5,550), third in aces (154) and 10th in block assists (339). She led the Illini in assists all four years she competed and topped the conference in that category for two years (1985-86). The Western Springs, Ill., native was an AVCA All Mideast Region team honoree (1987), a second-team Academic All-American (1987), and a three-time All-Big Ten selection and Academic All-Big Ten pick (1985-87). Johnson was also named to the Big Ten All-Decade Team in 1992. She earned a master's degree from Illinois in kinesiology and sports administration in 1992. Following her playing career, Johnson entered the coaching realm. She was an assistant coach with the Illini from 1990-93. She was the head coach at Missouri from 1994-99 and James Madison from 2000-09, where she was named CAA Coach of the Year twice in 2002 and 2006. Johnson returned to Champaign this fall when her husband, Ron Garner, was named head coach of the Illinois women's track & field program.
Tim Simon (1988, track & field)
A two-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree and eight-time Big Ten Champion, Simon was tabbed Big Ten Outdoor Track Athlete of the Year in 1988, the same year he was named Athlete of both the Indoor and Outdoor Championships. He finished third in the 400-meter run at the 1988 NCAA Championships behind two UCLA sprinters who won medals at that year's Seoul Olympics. Simon holds three Illini records in the 300- and 400-meter dash and 4x400 relay. He earned a medical degree from Howard University has been a colon and rectal surgeon in Georgia since 2002.
Three former Big Ten student-athletes have been tabbed as finalists for the 2014 James E. Sullivan Award, the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) announced on Monday. Kelsey Robinson
(Nebraska-volleyball), John Urschel
(Penn State-football) and David Boudia
(Purdue-diving) are three of the 19 nominees for the award that honors the nation's outstanding amateur athlete. The Sullivan Award has been presented annually since 1930 and is based on character, leadership and sportsmanship.
A public vote will account for one-third of the athlete's overall score, to vote click here
. Voting will remain open until March 23 at 11:59 ET. Three finalists will be named no later than March 28 and the winner will be announced at an awards ceremony on Friday, April 11 at the AAU National Headquarters in Orlanda, Fla.
Big Ten volleyball saw a record-setting 2013 season come to a
close at the NCAA Championships in Seattle as Penn State and Wisconsin
participated in the championship match, the first time two Big Ten teams faced
off in the national final. The Nittany Lions won their fifth national title in
the last seven years and sixth overall, tying Stanford for the most in NCAA
NCAA Bound: The Big Ten sent a conference record-tying eight teams to the
NCAA Championship, with five earning top-16 seeds. Big Ten Champion Penn State
entered the tournament as the No. 2 overall seed, while No. 8 Nebraska, No. 10
Minnesota, No. 12 Wisconsin and No. 13 Illinois each earned top-16 seeds.
Michigan, Michigan State and Purdue also received bids to the tournament. Big Ten
teams compiled a 23-7 record in this year's tournament, breaking the all-time
win total for the conference of 19 set in 2010 and 2012. Additionally, seven
Big Ten squads advanced to the Sweet 16, the most by any conference in
tournament history. For a look back at
the entire NCAA Championship, visit the Championship Central page HERE.
Nationally Noticed: Thirteen Big Ten volleyball players were selected as
AVCA Division I All-Americans, the most of any conference, with four players
earning first-team status. Minnesota's Tori
Dixon, Nebraska's Kelsey
Robinson, and Penn State's Micha
Hancock and Ariel Scott
earned first-team honors, while Michigan State's Lauren Wicinski, Minnesota's Ashley Wittman, Penn State's Deja McClendon and Wisconsin's Lauren Carlini were named to the second team. Illinois' Jocelynn Birks, Michigan State's Kori Moster, Nebraska's Kadie Rolfzen, Penn State's Katie Slay and Purdue's Val Nichol earned third-team honors.
Thirteen others received honorable mention recognition -- Illinois' Jennifer Beltran, Michigan's Jennifer Cross, Lexi Dannemiller and Molly Toon, Michigan State's Alexis Mathews, Minnesota's Adrianna Nora, Nebraska's Meghan Haggerty and Mary Pollmiller, Northwestern's Stephanie Holthus, Ohio State's Kaitlyn Leary, Penn State's Nia Grant, Purdue's KiKi Jones and Wisconsin's Ellen Chapman. For the
complete release, click HERE.
Off The Court Honors: Seniors Kristen
Kelsay of Michigan State and Katie Slay of Penn State earned Capital One
Academic All-America honors, with Slay being named Capital One Academic
All-America of the Year, the College Sports Information Directors of America
(CoSIDA) announced on Dec. 12. Slay, a communications sciences and disorders
major was a first-team selection, while Kelsay, a psychology major, was named
to the third team. The pair of Academic All-Americans marks the third
consecutive year that two conference standouts have earned the accolade. Additionally,
Penn State's Maddie Harding was the recipient of the NCAA's Elite 89 Award,
given to the individual who has reached the pinnacle of competition at the
national championship level in his or her sport, while also achieving the
highest academic standard among his or her peers. For more on Academic
All-America honors, click HERE.
For the Elite 89 Award, click HERE.
Head of the CLASS:
Penn State right side hitter, Ariel Scott was selected as the 2013 Senior CLASS
Award winner in NCAA Division I volleyball. The award, chosen by a nationwide
vote of Division I volleyball coaches, national volleyball media and fans, is
given annually to the most outstanding senior student-athlete in Division I
volleyball. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified
as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of
excellence - classroom, community, character and competition. An acronym for
Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Senior CLASS
Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their
platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their
communities. Two other Big Ten student-athletes earned Senior Class Award
recognition, as Michigan's Jennifer Cross and Michigan State's Lauren Wicinski
were named to the award's second team. For more on the Senior CLASS Award,
Coach 'Em Up: In
his 35th season at the helm of the Penn State women's volleyball team, head
coach Russ Rose was selected as the 2013 AVCA Division I Coach of the Year. The
award is the fifth time Rose has been honored as the national coach of the year
during his tenure at Penn State, having earned the award in 1990, 1997, 2007
and 2008. Rose guided the 2013 squad to its fifth national title in the last
seven years and a 34-2 overall record, ending the season on a 25-match win
streak. In conference play the Nittany Lions posted a 19-1 mark, good for PSU's
16th Big Ten Championship in program history. Rose picked up both
Big Ten and AVCA Northeast Region Coach of the Year honors this year. For more
on Coach Rose's honor, click HERE.
Regional Recognition: Big Ten volleyball standouts collected numerous
AVCA Division I Regional Awards on Tuesday, with 31 players earning All-Region
honors. In their respective regions, head coaches Hugh McCutcheon of Minnesota
(North) and Russ Rose of Penn State (Northeast) took home Coach of the Year
accolades, while Nebraska's Kadie Rolfzen (North) and Wisconsin's Lauren
Carlini (Northeast) won Freshman of the Year awards. Big Ten student-athletes
made up the entire North Region team and included Michigan's Jennifer Cross,
Lexi Dannemiller and Molly Toon, Michigan State's Alexis Mathews, Kori Moster
and Lauren Wicinski, Minnesota's Tori Dixon, Adrianna Nora and Ashley Wittman,
Nebraska's Meghan Haggerty, Mary Pollmiller, Kelsey Robinson and Kadie Rolfzen
and Northwestern's Stephanie Holthus. Northeast Region honorees were Illinois'
Jennifer Beltran and Jocelynn Birks, Ohio State's Kaitlyn Leary, Penn State's
Nia Grant, Micha Hancock, Deja McClendon, Ariel Scott and Katie Slay, Purdue's
KiKi Jones and Val Nichol and Wisconsin's Lauren Carlini and Ellen Chapman. The
Illini's Liz McMahon, Huskers' Cecilia Hall, Wildcats' Caleigh Ryan and
Boilermakers' Carly Cramer and Catherine Rebarchak earned honorable mention
recognition. For more on the regional award winners, click HERE.
Familiar Big Ten Title Territory: With a 3-0 win over Ohio State in the
final week of the regular season, Penn State earned the outright 2013 Big Ten
Volleyball Championship. The crown marked the 10th in the last 11 years and
16th overall for the Nittany Lions. Penn State ended the regular season with a
19-1 record in Big Ten play and 28-2 overall mark and earned the
conference's automatic berth to the NCAA Championship. Click HERE
for more on Penn State's Big Ten Championship.
Taking Home the Hardware: The Big Ten announced its
postseason volleyball awards on Dec. 3, with student-athletes from four schools
earning recognition following the conclusion of the 2013 regular season.
Nebraska's Kelsey Robinson was named the Big Ten Player of the Year, while Michigan
State's Kori Moster and Wisconsin's Lauren Carlini were tabbed Defensive Player
and Freshman of the Year, respectively. Penn State's Micha Hancock earned
Setter of the Year honors, while Nittany Lion head coach Russ Rose was tabbed
Coach of the Year by Big Ten coaches and media. For the full All-Big Ten teams,
And The Academic Awards Go To: Following the
conclusion of the fall season, the Big Ten recognized a total of 869 fall
sports student-athletes who had been named to the Academic All-Conference team,
which included 75 volleyball players. To be eligible for Academic All-Big Ten
selection, student-athletes must be letterwinners who are in at least their
second academic year at their institution and carry a cumulative grade-point
average of 3.0 or higher. At least 20 student-athletes maintained unblemished
cumulative GPAs, including volleyball players Maggie Halloran of Michigan State,
Maggie Harding of Penn State and Faye Adelaja of Purdue. For the complete
Academic All-Big Ten release, click HERE.
Where We Rank: Eight Big Ten volleyball teams were ranked or receiving
votes in the final AVCA Division I Coaches poll of the 2013 season, which was
released on Dec. 23. The conference boasted the nation's top two teams and five
squads in the top 10. NCAA and Big Ten Champion Penn State led the way at No. 1 and national runner-up Wisconsin was ranked No. 2. Nebraska checked in at No. 7, followed
by No. 8 Purdue, No. 10 Minnesota, No. 14 Michigan State and No. 16 Illinois.
Michigan was receiving votes. For
the complete poll, click HERE.
Statistically Speaking: Numerous Big Ten standouts
appeared among the top 25 of the final NCAA statistical leaders of 2013,
including five in the top 10. Penn State's Micha Hancock was second in the
nation in aces per set, while teammate Katie Slay was third in blocks per set. Ohio
State's Kaitlyn Leary ranked fourth in kills per set. In points per set, Michigan
State's Lauren Wicinski was ninth, while Leary was 10th. For the
complete statistical breakdowns, click HERE.