Paige Benjamin Named A John McLendon Memorial Minority Postgraduate Scholarship Winner

May 13, 2003

CLEVELAND, Ohio - Washington women's volleyball player Paige Benjamin has been named one of five winners of the fourth annual John McLendon Memorial Minority Postgraduate Scholarship Award, the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics announced today.

The winners will each receive a $10,000 grant to be used toward postgraduate studies in athletics administration. Funding for the scholarship program has been provided in part by adidas America; American Football Coaches Association (AFCA); Host Communications; Major League Baseball (MLB); National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC); National Basketball Association (NBA); Sears, Roebuck and Co.; and NACDA.

Minorities (as defined by federal guidelines) who intend to pursue a postgraduate degree in athletics administration are eligible for these scholarships. Students were required to have a minimum grade point average of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, have senior status and have demonstrated leadership qualities on an institutional or community level.

In addition to Benjamin, the other four winners are Alisse Ali-Christie (UC Davis), Brian Moore (Georgia), Renee Sudduth (Baker) and Brandon Taylor (North Carolina A&T State).

Benjamin, who boasted a 3.84 grade point average in Accounting, led the Huskies to their best finish since 1997 with a 20-11 record en route to a fifth place finish in the Pac-10 (9-9) and a second round appearance in the NCAA Tournament. A first team All-American, second team Academic All-American and first team Pac-10 All-Conference selection, Benjamin became the school's all-time leader in season kills this year with 573 and ranks fourth on the career chart with 1,287 kills. Her 5.31 kills per game average was 14th nationally and second in the Pac-10.

Benjamin concluded her career ranking among the school's top 10 in numerous categories including first in career hitting percentage (.307), sixth in total attacks (3,096), eighth in block assists (266) and ninth in total blocks (292).

In March, Benjamin was honored with a NCAA postgraduate scholarship award in the amount of $6,900.

Members of the John McLendon Memorial Minority Blue Ribbon Committee were responsible for selecting the finalists. Completing this task were Daniel Boggan, senior vice president, NCAA; Kofi Bonner, vice president/chief administrative officer; Cleveland Browns; Greg Gumbel, CBS Sports; Wayne Embry, chief executive officer - retired, Cleveland Cavaliers; Curt Hamakawa, director of international relations, U.S. Olympic Committee; Jim Host, chief executive officer, Host Communications; Tom Mercer, director of team sales, adidas America; Robin Roberts, ESPN/ABC Sports; Grant Teaff, executive director, American Football Coaches Association; Claire Van Ummerson, director, Office of Women in Higher Education, American Council on Education; and Gene Washington, director of football development, NFL.

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