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USC’s Anna Cockrell and Colorado’s Sage Hurta named co-Pac-12 Woman of the Year

Aug 20, 2021

» Pac-12 Woman of the Year History

SAN FRANCISCO - USC’s Anna Cockrell and COLORADO’s Sage Hurta have been selected co-Pac-12 Woman of the Year, the Conference office announced Friday. The women become the Conference’s candidates for the 2021 NCAA Woman of the Year, presented annually to a graduating student-athlete who has distinguished herself throughout her collegiate careers in the areas of academic achievement, athletic excellence, community service and leadership.

Cockrell (Charlotte, N.C.), who recently represented USA Track & Field at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, was also named a 2021 Tom Hansen Medal recipient following her sterling track & field career at USC. A 12-time NCAA All-American, Cockrell won three individual event national titles and two team national championships with the Trojans - highlighted by leading the Women of Troy to the 2021 team crown by becoming just the second woman in NCAA history to win both the 100- and 400-meter hurdles titles in the same year.

The USC dual degree recipient with a bachelor’s in communication and political science minor (3.98 GPA) and master’s in public policy (4.0 GPA) was twice named the CoSIDA Academic All-America Team Member of the Year for Division I women's track & field and cross country (2020, 2021). In total, she was a four-time CoSIDA Academic All-American, and was also recognized as both the USTFCCCA Scholar Track Athlete of the Year for outdoor track & field and Pac-12 Women's Track & Field Scholar-Athlete of the Year in 2021. The four-time team captain served as founder and leading member of USC’s United Black Student-Athlete Association, was a member of Lambda Pi Eta, the Annenberg School’s Communications Honors Society, and was 1-of-2 athletes on 11-person search committee involved in the selection of USC's athletic director.

Along with being an NCAA Woman of the Year nominee, Hurta (Hamilton, N.Y.) was also selected a 2021 Pac-12 Tom Hansen Medal recipient following a standout cross country and track & field career at Colorado. She was a seven-time NCAA All-American in total, including only the second four-time All-American in CU cross country history. She is also 1-of-2 athletes in CU history with an individual national title (2021 Mile), relay national title (2017 DMR) and team national championship (2018 XC). Additionally, she helped the Buffaloes to a pair of Pac-12 Cross Country Championships (2016, 2017) and won a pair of Pac-12 Track & Field Championships event titles (2018 Steeplechase, 2021 800-meter run).

Academically, the chemical and biological engineering major and statistics minor carried a 3.98 grade-point average. She was a three-time CoSIDA Academic All-American, including First Team honors in 2020 and 2021, the 2021 USTFCCCA Scholar Track Athlete of the Year for indoor track & field, and the 2019 Pac-12 Cross Country Scholar-Athlete of the Year. The 2019 Colorado Sportswoman of the Year's community service participation includes Read with the Buffs, Holiday Angel Tree, Girls on the Run, and Elementary Exercise Outreach.

Eligible female student-athletes are nominated by their schools, then each conference office reviews the nominations from its members and submits a conference nominee to the NCAA. The Woman of the Year Selection Committee, made up of representatives from the NCAA membership, will now choose the Top 30 honorees — 10 from each division — from the conference-level nominees. The Top 30 honorees will be announced in September. The selection committee will determine the top three honorees in each division from the Top 30, and the nine finalists will be announced this fall. From those nine finalists, the NCAA Committee on Women's Athletics then will choose the 2021 NCAA Woman of the Year.

Four student-athletes from the Pac-12 have won the prestigious NCAA Woman of the Year award: Justine Schluntz (2010), Lacey Nymeyer (2009), Whitney Myers (2007), and Tanya Jones (1994). All four were student-athletes at the University of Arizona