Nine NCAA Division I Swimming and Diving Champions On 2014 Academic All-American Roster

YOUNG HARRIS, Georgia, June 5. NINE NCAA swimming and diving champions find themselves on the list of the 2014 Capital One Academic All-America Division I men’s and women’s at-large teams, released today by the College Sports Information Directors of America.

Connor Jaeger is the only male NCAA swimming champion on the list, though he is joined by 10 other swimmers named as Academic All-Americans. Jaeger won the 1650 freestyle this year, as well as the 500 and 1650 last year. Among the eight female NCAA champions, six are swimmers while two are divers.

A total of 16 female swimmers and divers are among the 45 women on the first-team, second-team and third-team lists. Add in the two water polo players and aquatic sports make up 40 percent of the Academic All-American lists for the women.

Below is the full list of aquatic sport athletes named to the Division I Academic All-America lists, followed by the press release issued by CoSIDA highlighting first-team members.

First team
Elizabeth Beisel (Florida)
Nick Caldwell (Wisconsin)
Brad deBorde (Florida)
Maya diRado (Stanford)
Connor Jaeger (Michigan)
Ivan Nechunaev (Grand Canyon)
Emma Reaney (Notre Dame)
Laura Ryan (Georgia)

Second team
Phil Albu (South Dakota State)
Darcie Anderson (San Jose State)
Floria Bolonyai (Southern California)
Andrew Gemmell (Georgia)
Lindsay Gendron (Tennessee)
Haley Ishimatsu (Southern California)
Elise Lofgren (Saint Francis)
Eric Ress (Indiana)
Brooklynn Snodgrass (Indiana)
Shannon Vreeland (Georgia)

Third team
Rachael Acker (California)
Kristen Barta (U.S. Military Academy)
Courtney Beidler (Michigan)
Jaime Bissett (Purdue)
Cory Bowersox (Texas)
Ellen Bradford (U.S. Naval Academy)
Nicolas Fink (Georgia)
Shae Fournier (Indiana)
Brittany Kuras (Buffalo)
Mike Mosca (Harvard)
Gabrielle Shishkoff (Penn State)

Senior gymnasts Michael Newburger of The Ohio State University and Kim Jacob of the University of Alabama lead the 2014 Capital One Academic All-America® Division I Men’s and Women’s At-Large teams, as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).

Newburger and Jacob have been chosen as the winners of the Capital One All-America® of the Year award for Division I Men’s and Women’s At-Large programs, respectively.

The at-large team for the Capital One Academic All-America® program includes the sports of fencing, golf, gymnastics, ice hockey, lacrosse rifle, skiing, swimming and diving, tennis, water polo for both men and women; and bowling, rowing and field hockey for women; and volleyball and wrestling for men.

A physics and mathematics major with a 3.96 G.P.A., Newburger makes his second-consecutive appearance on the Capital One All-America® Division I Men’s At-Large first team, after earning a spot last season. He is a four-time Distinguished Merit Scholar, National Buckeye Scholar and three-time Big Ten Distinguished Scholar. A native of Austin, Texas, he was a finalist for the Big Ten Medal of Honor and was a four-time Academic All-Big Ten. A two-time All-American and 2013 NCAA champion on the pommel horse, he set a new NCAA and Ohio State record on the apparatus scoring a 16.25 at the Windy City Invitational. The No. 1-ranked gymnast on the pommel horse, he was also a finalist for the prestigious Nissen-Emery Award, presented annually to the top-collegiate gymnast. Newburger won NCAA and Big Ten Postgraduate Scholarships and will pursue a Ph.D. in physics at Ohio State.

Earning a 4.00 G.P.A. in exercise science, Jacob is the 2014 NCAA All-Around Champion and Honda Award winner for gymnastics, earning four first-team All-America honors this season. A native of Raleigh, North Carolina, she is the first-ever student-athlete to win the SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year three times, was the winner of the SEC Postgraduate Scholarship award, and was the NCAA Elite 89 Award winner in 2013. During her career in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, she has helped the Crimson Tide win NCAA titles in 2011 and 2012. It is also Jacob’s second-career appearance on the Capital One Academic All-America® Division I Women’s At-Large first team.

The Capital One Academic All-America® Division I Men’s At-Large first team is comprised of four swimmers, three golfers, three skiers, three wrestlers, a fencer and Newburger is the only gymnast.

In additional to Newburger, Alabama golfer Cory Whitsett are the only two-time repeat first-team selection on the Capital One Academic All-America® Division I Men’s At-Large team. Joining the duo on the first team are swimmers Nick Caldwell of the University of Wisconsin, Brad deBorde of the University of Florida, Connor Jaeger of the University of Michigan and Ivan Nechunaev of Grand Canyon University. Wrestlers Tyler Caldwell of Oklahoma State University, Kendric Maple of the University of Oklahoma and David Taylor of Penn State University all earned their first-career first-team honor, while skiers Andreas Haug of the University of Colorado, and teammates Mats Resaland and Armin Triendl of the University of New Mexico are, as well. Fellow golfers Brandon Hagy of the University of California and Bobby Wyatt of Alabama are also on the Capital One Academic All-America® Division I Men’s At-Large first team, with fencer Gerek Meinhardt of the University of Notre Dame rounds out the 15-member squad.

Haug and Jaeger were second-team selections on the Capital One Academic All-America® Division I men’s at-large team last year, with Haug also earning a spot on the second team in 2012. Hagy and DeBorde were named to the third team in 2013, while deBorde landed a spot on the second team in 2012, as well.

Alabama and New Mexico are the only schools with two first-team representatives. All the first-team honorees are also seniors or graduate students.

A Sarasota, Florida, native with a perfect 4.00 G.P.A. in chemistry, Caldwell is a member of the U.S. Men’s Swimming team. After transferring from Florida, the senior set three Big Ten records this year in the 200-, 1,000- and 1650-yard freestyle events this season. A second team All-Big Ten honoree, he swam the second-fastest time in school history at the Big Ten Championships in the 500 freestyle (4:15.81). Caldwell also earned a spot on the Academic All-Big Ten team.

Caldwell is a four-time All-American at Oklahoma and Oklahoma State, spending his last two seasons in Stillwater, Oklahoma, competing for the Cowboys. The senior finished third at 165 pounds at the NCAA Championship, helping OSU to a second-place finish in the team competition, just three points out of first place. Caldwell has traveled internationally to compete, taking the year off during the 2011-12 campaign in hopes of making a trip to the London Olympics and placed third at the 2011 Freestyle Olympic Trials Qualifier. A native of Wichita, Kansas, he is an education major with a 3.54 G.P.A.

Boasting a 3.64 G.P.A. in industrial and systems engineering, deBorde is a 20-time All-American and 18-time All-SEC selection, while holding the school record in the 50 and 100 freestyle events. The SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year this year, the Longwood, Florida, native is a two-time conference champion in the 50 freestyle. As a senior, deBorde has earned a NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship and was president of the school’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.

A native of Westlake Village, California, Hagy has a 3.72 G.P.A. in business. The senior was recently named Golfweek’s Byron Nelson Award winner, presented to a graduating senior that has shown excellence in golf and academics, as well as their character, community service and integrity, including good citizenship. The sixth-ranked golfer in the country, he was a semifinalist for The Ben Hogan Award, given annually to the top-college and amateur player. A first-team All-American and All-Pac-12 pick, he has been ranked as high as the No. 4 amateur in the world this season. Scheduled to represent the U.S. at the Palmer Cup this year, he was also named the Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year.

A senior from Blommenholm, Norway, Haug carries a 3.98 G.P.A. in accounting and finance and was a three-time All-District 7 honoree, as well as a three time Capital One Academic All-America® at-large honoree. He was named Colorado’s Senior Male Scholar Athlete for having the highest G.P.A. among all senior male athletes, and was also given the CU Sports Performer of the Year award for athletic achievement, becoming the first Buffs student-athlete to earn both awards. He is a six-time member of the Dean’s List, earning a 4.0 four times and the NCAA Elite 89 Award winner in 2012. Athletically, he became the third CU men’s alpine skier in the past 20 years to participate in four NCAA Championships, helping the Buffs win the NCAA title in 2012 and 2013.

A senior and native of Fair Haven, New Jersey, Jaeger is a mechanical engineering major with a 3.42 G.P.A. He helped the Wolverines to a top-five finish this year after winning the individual title in the 1650 freestyle. Last year, he took home a pair of individual crowns, while helping the program capture its first NCAA title since 1995. Jaeger is a member of the U.S. National Team and is a two-time Big Ten Swimmer of the Year. He is a 10-time All-American winning three individual national titles in his career. He also placed sixth at the 2012 London Olympics in the 1,500 freestyle.

Maple hails from Wichita, Kansas, and is a graduate student with a 3.42 G.P.A. earning his master’s in adult and higher education. He is a three-time All-American and four-time NCAA qualifier, winning the individual title at 141 pounds in 2013. Maple was a three-time Big 12 Champion, as well as a two-time Academic All-Big 12 honoree. He also earned All-Academic nods three times from the National Wrestling Coaches of America.

A graduate student from San Francisco, California, Meinhardt has a 3.83 G.P.A. while pursuing his master’s degree in business administration. He was ranked No. 1 in the world to start the season and went on to win the NCAA Men’s Foil title. Graduating cum laude with an undergraduate degree in information technology management, he was named to the Dean’s list three times while also earning two NCAA crowns and four All-America honors. He also helped the U.S. men’s foil squad to a fourth-place finish at the London Olympics Games in 2012, his second-career Olympics appearance.

Boasting a near-perfect G.P.A., carrying a 3.98 G.P.A. while pursuing a master’s of science in accounting, Nechunaev claimed a pair of school records in his final season at Grand Canyon, notching the fastest times in the 200 butterfly and 100 individual medley. He also posted the second-fastest time in Western Athletic Conference history in the 100 butterfly. The Tomsk, Russia, native is a six-time All-American and was part of the 400-medley team that claimed a Division II title last year. He was also the 2013 NCAA Division II Elite 89 Award winner.

A native of Kongsberg, Norway, Resaland has a 4.04 G.P.A. and is majoring in business administration. He finished third at the NCAA Championships in the Nordic freestyle, earning the third All-America honor of his career, while helping the Lobos to a third-place team finish this year.

A graduate student with a 3.54 G.P.A. in education administration, Taylor was named the Dan Hodge Trophy winner for the second time (2012, 2014), wrestling’s Heisman Trophy. He finished the 2014 campaign unbeaten and with two NCAA individual titles, while helping the Nittany Lions to a fourth-consecutive NCAA team title. He is a four-time All-American and was named the Most Outstanding Wrestler at the national meet this season. A native of St. Paris, Ohio, wraps up his career undefeated in Big Ten play.

Hailing from Oberperfuss, Austria, Triendl is a senior with a 4.10 G.P.A. in finance. He bounced back from a knee injury that forced him to sit out the 2012-13 season to place second at the NCAA Championships in 2014 in the slalom. The second-place finish earned him first team All-America honors. He also helped the Lobos place third in at the nationals competition this season.

Whitsett has maintained a perfect 4.00 G.P.A. in his career in business. A native of Houston, Texas, he helped the Crimson Tide capture a second-straight NCAA title. An All-American, he won his match-play matchup in the finals to help Alabama claim its title, 4-1. After competing for a NCAA title, he also earned a U.S. Open berth after advancing through sectional qualifying. He also helped Alabama claim the SEC title in 2014 for a third-consecutive year.

Whitsett’s teammate also had a stellar year, helping the Crimson Tide claim a second-straight NCAA men’s golf crown and third-consecutive SEC title. He became the fourth Alabama player to claim the SEC individual title. A native of Mobile, Alabama, he also helped the Alabama squad a No. 1 national ranking this season and was named a Golfweek/PING Division I first team All-American.

The 15 members of the 2014 Capital One Academic All-America® Division I Men’s At-Large first team have an average G.P.A. of 3.80.

Nine different sports are represented on the Capital One Academic All-America® Division I Women’s At-Large first team, with swimming being the most represented with four. Three gymnasts also earned spots on the squad, and a pair of ice hockey and tennis players, as well. The other sports represented with one each are: bowling, field hockey, golf, lacrosse and skiing.

Joining Jacob on the Capital One Academic All-America® Division I Women’s At-Large first team are swimmers Elizabeth Beisel of Florida, Maya DiRado of Stanford University, Emma Reaney of Notre Dame and Laura Ryan of the University of Georgia. Fellow gymnasts on the first team are Lara Albright of Oklahoma and Emily Wong of the University of Nebraska, along with Capital One Academic All-America® of the Year Jacob. Tennis players Mary Anne Daines of Alabama and Petra Niedermayerova of Kansas State University landed spots on the first team, along with ice hockey players Ali Binnington of Rochester Institute of Technology and Vanessa Gagnon of Clarkson University. Rounding out the first team honorees are field hockey player Lauren Blazing of Duke University, bowler Megan Buja of the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, lacrosse player Taylor D’Amore of Johns Hopkins University, skier Anja Gruber of the University of Vermont and golfer Stephanie Meadow of Alabama.

Six of the 15 member of the first team are repeat honorees, including Beisel, who was the 2013 Capital One Academic All-America® of the Year. She is also the only one to be named to the first team three times. Buja, Gruber, Jacob, Meadow and Niedermayerova are all earning their second-straight first-team nod, while Binnington makes the jump to the first team after earning a spot on the third team in 2013 and Wong was a second-team member last year. All but three of the honorees are seniors or graduate students, with Binnington, Blazing and Reaney earning a place on the first team as juniors.

Alabama is the only school to be represented more than once.

A senior and native of Carrollton, Texas, Albright has a 3.80 G.P.A. in marketing. She earned her first-career All-America honor on the floor exercise, tying for first in the event at the NCAA Super Six finals, while helping the Sooner win their first NCAA title, tying for the crown. This season, she also earned All-Big 12 honors, also helping the team capture the 2014 Conference title. Albright is a recipient of the Big 12 Dr. Gerald Lage Academic Achievement award and is an Academic All-Big 12 selection.

Beisel is a native of North Kingstown, Rhode Island, and boasts a 3.76 G.P.A. while majoring in telecommunications. The 2013 Capital One Academic All-America® of the Year is a two-time U.S. Olympian, winning a silver and a bronze in 2012 in London. She is an 18-time All-American and 20-time All-SEC selection. She has won two NCAA individual titles in her career and nine conference crowns. She was voted the SEC Women’s Swimmer of the Year in 2012 and the Freshman Women’s Swimmer of the Year in 2011. A three-time Capital One Academic All-America® at-large first team honoree, she is the recipient of the NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship and 2013 SEC Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year.

A native of Oakville, Ontario, junior goalkeeper Binnington led RIT to the College Hockey America Championship game in just the program’s second season at Division I. She was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player and also became the first Tiger to earn All-United States College Hockey Online third team All-America honors since the program moved up to Division I. Binnington is a finance major with a 4.00 G.P.A.

Blazing helped the Blue Devils advance to the NCAA Championship finals, en route to earning third team All-America honors. A native of Durham, North Carolina, the junior goalie led the ACC and ranked fifth in the nation in save percentage (.792). She was named to the All-South Region first team, All-ACC second team and All-ACC Tournament. A cultural anthropology and political science double major with a 3.99 G.P.A., she earned a spot on the All-ACC Academic team and the NFHCA All-Academic squad. She was also named the Scholar of Distinction by the NFHCA.

Hailing from Rockford, Illinois, and majoring in human ecology with a concentration in dietetics, while carrying a perfect 4.00 G.P.A., she was the NCAA Elite 89 winner three years in a row and last year became just the second player in UMES history to earn Capital One Academic All-America honors. Buja is a three-time All-Mid-Eastern Conference selection and was the 2012 U.S. Bowling Congress Star of Tomorrow winner. She earned National Tenpins Coaches Association (NTCA) All-America honors this season for the first time in her career. As a freshman and sophomore, she helped the Hawks win the NCAA titles in 2011 and 2012.

A senior from Canandaigua, New York, D’Amore is a biology major with a G.P.A. of 3.88. She was named the American Lacrosse Conference (ALC) Offensive Player of the Year and was a first team IWLCA All-American after earning second team honors last year. This season, she led the nation in assists (53), assists per game (2.65) and points per game (5.25), finishing her career ranked fifth in NCAA Division I history in career assists. She was a member of the JHU Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and served as president during her senior year.

Daines, a native of Ogden, Utah, was the 2014 SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year after boasting a 4.00 G.P.A. in human performance and exercise science as a graduate student. She is a two-time ITA All-American, earning singles honors in 2012 and doubles honors in 2013. She is a three-time First Team All-SEC selection and was the SEC Freshman of the Year and ITA Southern Region Rookie of the Year in 2011. She has been nationally ranked in singles and doubles throughout her career and advanced to the semifinals of the NCAA Doubles Championship last year.

A native of Santa Rosa, California, DiRado has earned a 3.63 G.P.A. in management science and engineering. A 21-time All-American, she has four NCAA titles, all coming during her final campaign. She is also a seven-time Pac-12 Champion and is responsible for two Stanford records in the 800-free relay and 400-free relay. She was a member of the U.S. National Team in the 200 IM and 400 IM, competing at the U.S. Olympic Trials and at the 2013 World Championships. She is a two-time Academic All-Pac-12 honoree, as well.

A graduate student from St. Constant, Quebec, pursuing her master’s in business administration while boasting a 4.00 G.P.A., Gagnon was the NCAA Elite 89 Award winner, also leading her squad to the 2014 NCAA Women’s Ice Hockey title. She was also the recipient of the ECAC’s Mandi Schwartz Student-Athlete of the Year Award, while on the ice, she was voted the Conference’s Best Defensive Forward.

A senior out of Leutkrich, Germany, Gruber is a business administration major with a 3.95 G.P.A. This year she won an individual NCAA title in the classic, her second straight in the discipline. She also won her fourth-consecutive EISA individual title and helped the Catamounts to a runner-up finish at the NCAA Championships. A Capital One Academic All-America® at-large first team honoree last year, she is a two-time skiing all-academic and earned UV’s top female scholar-athlete award.

Hailing from Jordanstown, Northern Ireland, Meadow joins fellow Crimson Tide Jacob on the first team, her second-straight honor. Meadow is an accounting major with a 4.00 G.P.A. and was this year’s NCAA Elite 89 Award winner. Competing at the NCAA Championships all four years, she is a three-time WGCA All-American Scholar. She was selected both the SEC Player of the Year and Scholar-Athlete of the Year in 2013 and 2014, earning All-SEC status for the fourth-consecutive year.

An at-large selection for the NCAA Division I Women’s Tennis Singles Championships, senior Niedermayerova of Brno, Czech Republic, is the first Wildcat to compete at the event four-straight years. The school-record holder for singles wins (105), she is also the first player in school history to earn All-Big 12 honors in singles four times. An ITA All-American in 2012 and 2013, she is a three-time ITA Scholar-Athlete and was the Big 12’s Scholar-Athlete of the Year this season. In 2011, she was the Big 12 Player of the Year and Freshman of the Year. Niedermayerova is an economics major with a 3.97 G.P.A.

A Lawrence, Kansas, native, Reaney boasts a 3.68 G.P.A. as a junior in design, and also has a minor in business economics. She became the first Notre Dame swimmer or diver to win an individual national championship, breaking the NCAA and American record in the 200 breaststroke, a record she set at the ACC Championships. She was voted the ACC Women’s Swimmer of the Year and ACC Most Valuable Women’s Swimmer after winning three individual conference crowns. She was also the ACC’s Women’s Swimming & Diving Scholar-Athlete of the Year and has twice earned a spot on the Dean’s List.

A senior diver, Ryan is a psychology major with a 3.79 G.P.A. She helped the Bulldogs capture their second-straight NCAA Division I Women’s Swimming & Diving Championship. She earned SEC Female Diver of the Week honors three times this season and set the school record on the platform for a championship meet. A native of Elk River, Minnesota, she was also named to the Athletic Director’s Honor Roll and the Dean’s List. A recipient of the Ramsey Scholarship for Academic/Athletic Excellence, she served on the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. While at Indiana before transferring to Georgia, she was named a first team Scholar All-American by the College Swimming Coaches Association of America.

Wong caps her career as a gymnast with a long list of honors this season, including Big Ten Gymnast of the Year, first team All-Big Ten, Big Ten Medal of Honor and was a Honda Award Finalist. She was also the 2014 AAI Award Winner, which is announced annually at the NCAA Championships, and recognizes the nation’s top gymnast on the basis of athleticism, academic excellence and civic responsibility. Wong captured two conference individual titles and earned four NACGC/W All-America citations, including first team honors on the floor and in the all-around, this season. She was also a NCAA Regional Champion in the All-Around, Bars and Floor. A nutrition science major with a 3.92 G.P.A. from Grand Forks, North Dakota, she is a three-time Academic All-Big Ten and NACGC/W Scholastic All-American. She was the 2012 Big Ten Distinguished Scholar and is the Conference’s Wayne Duke Postgraduate Scholarship winner.

The 15 members of the 2014 Capital One Academic All-America® Division I Women’s At-Large first team have an average G.P.A. of 3.89.

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Author: Jeff Commings

Jeff Commings is the host of several shows on SwimmingWorld.TV, including "The Morning Swim Show," which features interviews with people making headlines in aquatic sports. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in journalism and was a nine-time NCAA All-American.

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