March 31, 2010
Park Ridge, Ill.--As the winter term of the 2009-10 school year comes to a close, the Big Ten recognizes a total of 536 winter sports athletes who have been named to the Academic All-Conference Team. The list of honored student-athletes features 33 men's and 53 women's basketball players, 42 men's and 54 women's gymnasts, 112 men's and 181 women's swimming and diving athletes and 61 wrestlers. 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 (GPA) of 3.0 or higher.
At least five Big Ten student-athletes have maintained unblemished GPAs. A trio of swimming and diving team members boast 4.0 GPAs in Michigan State's Sarah Mory (Sr., Mathematics) and Brian Rockwell (Sr., Mechanical Engineering) and Purdue's Christine Inman (Sr., Animal Science). Two Purdue basketball players have earned perfect GPAs in Mark Wohlford (Sr., Economics) and Chelsea Jones (So., Biology).
The Big Ten Academic All-Conference award winners also achieved excellence outside of the classroom. In women's gymnastics, Penn State's Brandi Personett (Sr., Nursing) earned Gymnast of the Year accolades for the second year in a row. Purdue's Chris Kramer (Sr., Organizational Leadership and Supervision) was tabbed the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year in men's basketball while Michigan State's Allyssa DeHaan (Sr., Human biology) earned Defensive Player of the Year laurels in women's basketball. On the mat, Minnesota's Jayson Ness (Sr., Technology Education) was named the Big Ten Wrestler of the Year.
The conference office will also present the Distinguished Scholar Award at the end of the academic year. Student-athletes eligible for the Distinguished Scholar Award must be letterwinners in at least their second year in residence at their institution. Qualifying student-athletes must have earned a GPA of 3.7 or higher for the current academic year, excluding summer school. The Big Ten Distinguished Scholar Award was established by conference Faculty Representatives as an addition to the conference's Academic All-Big Ten program. In July over 500 student-athletes were honored as the inaugural recipients of the Big Ten Distinguished Scholar Award.