Pac-10 Announces Winter Scholar-Athlete of the Year, Presented by Toyo Tires

March 19, 2009

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WALNUT CREEK, Calif. -- The Pacific-10 Conference has named the winter Scholar-Athletes of the Year, presented by Toyo Tires®. These awards have been established to honor collegiate student-athletes that are standouts both academically and in their sports discipline.

The Pac-10 Scholar-Athletes for winter include:

Andrea Axtell, Stanford - Women's swimming, 4.05 - biology
Ariana Berlin, UCLA - Women's gymnastics, 3.55 - world arts & culture
Sybil Dosty, Arizona State - Women's basketball, 4.00 - master's liberal arts
Jason Dunford, Stanford - Men's swimming, 3.74 - human biology
Thomas Kimbrell, Cal State Bakersfield - Wrestling, 3.72 - political science
Taylor Rochestie, Washington State - Men's basketball, 3.37 - communication

'Toyo is proud to support the Pac-10 and to acknowledge outstanding student-athletes for their efforts,' said Steve Hutchinson, senior director of marketing, Toyo Tire (U.S.A.) Corporation. 'By supporting today's achievers, we feel we are helping to grow tomorrow's leaders.'

In order to be eligible for the Pac-10 Scholar-Athlete of the Year award, student-athletes must be a senior (in athletics eligibility) on track to receive a degree, have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher, participate in at least 50% of the scheduled contests in the sport and have a minimum of one year in residence at the institution. Each Pac-10 institution nominates one individual per sport, and the winners are selected by a committee of Pac-10 staff members at the conclusion of each sport's regular season. The athletic accomplishments of the nominees are a consideration in the voting for the award.

A Scholar-Athlete of the Year will be named in each of the Pac-10's 22 sponsored sports: baseball, men's basketball, women's basketball, men's cross country, women's cross country, football, men's golf, women's golf, women's gymnastics, men's rowing, women's rowing, men's soccer, women's soccer, softball, men's swimming & diving, women's swimming & diving, men's tennis, women's tennis, men's track & field, women's track & field, women's volleyball, and wrestling.

Scholar-Athletes of the Year in each sport will receive a commemorative award. Toyo® will donate $1,000 to the scholarship funds of the institution's athletic department of each winner in recognition of their accomplishments.

'The Pac-10 and Toyo partnered in recognizing these student-athletes during the 2007-08 academic year and we are proud to continue recognizing these special student-athletes,' said Tom Hansen, Commissioner of the Pac-10. 'To be selected as the best student-athlete in any sport in the Pac-10 is a very special honor, and these are special young people, in academics as well as athletics. We are very appreciative that Toyo is helping them gain the recognition they deserve for their unique achievements.'

The Pac-10 Conference, in cooperation with Pac-10 corporate partner Toyo Tires, established the 'Pac-10 Scholar-Athlete of the Year Awards, presented by Toyo Tires' during the 2008-09 academic year.

Other nominees included:

Men's Basketball: Jordan Wilkes, CAL.
Women's Basketball: Amina Njonku, ARIZ; Mercedes Fox-Griffin, OSU; Jillian Harmon, STAN; Michelle Augustavo, WASH; Katie Appleton, WSU.
Women's Gymnastics: Alexis Green, ARIZ; Nicole Harris, ASU; Nicole Ourada, STAN; Kristen Omori, WASH.
Men's Swimming: Vanni Mangoni, USC; Yonatan Cohen, WASH.
Women's Swimming: Taylor Baughman, ARIZ; Frankie Judy, ASU; Dana Vollmer, CAL; Kayla Rawlings, OSU; Tess Schofield, UCLA; Rebecca Soni, USC; Maria Chang, WASH; Elyse Petersen, WSU.

To learn more about Toyo and its broad line of tires, log on to toyo.com.

- www.pac-10.org -

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