Cal's Leverenz named women's swimming and diving scholar-athlete of the year

By the Pac-12 Conference

WALNUT CREEK, Calif. - California's Caitlin Leverenz was named the Pac-12 Women's Swimming and Diving Scholar-Athlete of the Year, the Conference office announced on Saturday at the Pac-12 Women's Swimming and Men's and Women's Diving Championships. The award, which is presented in each of the 22 sports the Conference sponsors, was established to honor collegiate student-athletes that are standouts both academically and in their sports discipline.

In the pool, Leverenz has helped Cal to the last two NCAA team championships. In the 2012 NCAA Championships, she was crowned the 200-yard breaststroke champion, 200-yard individual medley champion and swam on the winning 200- and 400-yard medley relays en route to being named the NCAA Swimmer of the Meet. She also won the Honda Sports Award for swimming and was the Pac-12 Women's Swimmer of the Year. Leverenz was named the 2012 Pac-12 Swimmer of the Meet after leading the Golden Bears to the team title at the 2012 Pac-12 Women's Swimming and Men's and Women's Diving Championships. She won the 400 IM and 200 breaststroke and swam on Cal's winning 400-medley relay at last year's Conference meet. She won a bronze medal in the 200-meet IM at the 2012 London Olympics last summer.

The Tucson, Ariz., native, is a public health major and currently boasts a 3.13 GPA. She earned Pac-12 All-Academic honorable mention 2011 and 2012.

In order to be eligible for the Pac-12 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-12 institution may nominate one individual per sport, and the winners are selected by a committee of Pac-12 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-12'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.

The Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year Awards were established during the 2007-08 academic year.

Other nominees included: - Ellyn Baumgardner, ARIZ; Natalie Durant, STAN; Jessica Schmitt, USC; Maggy Boyd, UCLA.

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