Pac-10 Announces 2010-11 Winter Scholar-Athletes of the Year, Presented by Toyo Tires

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WALNUT CREEK, Calif. - The Pac-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.

"It is always a challenge selecting the Pac-10 Scholar-Athletes of the Year because there are so many remarkable student-athletes in our Conference," Pac-10 Commissioner Larry Scott said. "The Pac-10 is extremely proud of it's heritage of academic and athletic excellence and this group of student-athletes is an example of achieving balance and success at the highest levels."

2010-11 Winter Scholar-Athletes of the Year
Name, School GPA Sports Major
Rihard Kuksiks, Arizona State 3.00 Men's Basketball Interdisciplinary Studies
Kayla Pedersen, Stanford 3.53 Women's Basketball Communications/Psychology
Mary Atkinson, Arizona State 3.72 Women's Gymnastics Bioscience
Nathan Adrian, California 3.75 Men's Swimming Public Health
Kelsey Ditto, Stanford 3.99 Women's Swimming Political Science
Adam Hall, Boise State 3.50 Wrestling Health Science

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 may nominate 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.

"Toyo is proud to support the Pac-10 and to acknowledge outstanding student-athletes for their efforts," said Stan Chen, manager of events and motorsports, Toyo Tire U.S.A. Corp. "By supporting today's achievers, we feel we are helping to grow tomorrow's leaders."

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 2007-08 academic year.

Other nominees included:

Women's basketball:

Soana Lucet, ARIZ; Dymond Simon, ASU; Kristi Fallin, ORE; Kari LaPlante, USC; Sarah Morton, WASH

Women's gymnastics:

Miranda Russell, ARIZ; Avery Gee, CAL; Shelley Alexander, STAN; Brittani McCullough, UCLA;

Samantha Walior, WASH

Men's swimming:

Chris Pasanella, ASU; Kevin Little, USC

Women's swimming:

Katie Haron, ASU; Hannah Wilson, CAL; Brittany Beauchan, UCLA; Ellie Doran, USC; Talor Whitaker, WSU


Elijah Nacita, CSUB; Dylan Rush, STAN

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