Big Ten Medal of Honor: Miguel Pineda, Penn State Men's Gymnastics

Penn State men's gymnast Miguel Pineda

Miguel Pineda
Penn State Men’s Gymnastics

Both an accomplished student and a premier athlete, Penn State men’s gymnast Miguel Pineda embodies all the qualities which the Big Ten Medal of Honor represents.

Pineda possesses a 3.98 grade point average in biology, ranking in the top one-half percent of his class. A two-time Big Ten Distinguished Scholar recipient and three-time CGA First Team All-American Scholar Athlete, he was recognized on the Capital One Academic All-America® Men's At-Large First Team and received the NCAA Elite 88 Award in 2011. Pineda was recently named First Team Academic All-District, qualifying him to receive All-America honors for the second straight year.

Further testament to his achievements in the classroom and in the gym, Pineda was honored with the 2012 Wayne Duke Postgraduate Award and Penn State’s Ernest B. McCoy Award. He also finished as first runner-up for the nationally prominent Arthur Ashe Sports Scholar Award.

Pineda plans to attend medical school with the goal of becoming an orthopedic surgeon.

A 2012 finalist for the Nissen-Emery Award, collegiate gymnastics’ highest competitive honor, Pineda played an integral role in Penn State's success this season, captaining a Nittany Lion squad that placed third at the National Collegiate Championships and featured seven All-Americans. He served as a cornerstone of the nation’s No. 1 still rings line-up, ending the season individually ranked No. 4 in the event with two title wins and seven top three finishes.

In 2011, at the National Collegiate Championships, Pineda set a career high in the rings to place first in the national qualifier and then followed it up by a second place finish in the individual event finals, earning his lone All-America honor. He also medaled in the still rings at the 2011 Big Ten Championships, placing third.

For his career, Pineda recorded 52 top three finishes, including 19 titles wins.