Olynyk Named Scholar-Athlete Of Year By Athletic Directors

            CLEVELAND – Gonzaga University junior Kelly Olynyk has been named the Division I-AAA Athletics Directors Association Scholar-Athlete of the Year for men’s basketball as well as being named to the Scholar-Athlete Team.

             The 20 winners of the 11th Annual Division I-AAA Athletics Directors Association Scholar-Athlete Teams were announced Thursday by the Division I-AAA Athletics Directors Association (DI-AAA ADA).

            “Our Association congratulates this year’s scholar-athlete award winners,” stated Tim Hall, chair of the Division I-AAA ADA Scholar-Athlete Team Selection Committee and athletics director at the University of Missouri Kansas City. “We pride ourselves in honoring deserving student-athletes for both their academic and athletic achievements each year and are excited to have an additional platform on which to recognize these outstanding accomplishments.”

            Basketball players from all Division I-AAA ADA member institutions are eligible for these prestigious awards. Each of the nominees was required to have a minimum grade point average of 3.20 (on a 4.00 scale) in undergraduate study and have been a starter or important reserve with legitimate athletics credentials. Nominated student-athletes must have participated in at least 50 percent of the team’s games listed on the nomination form. To be eligible for nomination to the Scholar-Athlete Team, he/she must have reached junior academic standing at their institution (ineligible athletics transfers are not eligible).

            Olynyk graduated in December with a 3.53 GPA in accounting and is currently in his first semester of the MBA program at Gonzaga. The native of Kamloops, British Columbia, helped lead Gonzaga to a 32-3 record this past season, the first 30-win season in school history, and to a 15th straight trip to the NCAA Tournament. Gonzaga finished the season ranked No. 1 in the Associated Press poll and earned its first No. 1 seed into the NCAA Tournament.

            While Olynyk is the first Bulldog to receive the Scholar-Athlete of the Year honor, several Bulldogs have been named to the Scholar-Athlete Team. Sean Mallon was a three-time recipient from 2005-07; women’s basketball players Stephanie Hawk (2006-07) and Jamie Bjorklund Schaefer (2008-09) were two-time honorees, and Kyle Bankhead and Blake Stepp were each selected in 2004.

            A special Review Committee of Division I-AAA athletics directors was responsible for selecting the winners. Completing this task were Committee Chair Tim Hall; Don DiJulia, St. Joseph’s; Gene Doris, Fairfield; Bill Hogan, Seattle; Bill Husak, Loyola Marymount; Jean Lenti Ponsetto, DePaul; and Dave Mullins, East Tennessee State.

            Now in its 12th year, the Division I-AAA Athletics Directors Association's mission is to enhance initiatives common to its Division I-AAA membership (the 101 Division I institutions that do not sponsor football), in particular, aspects related to their flagship basketball programs. For more information on the Division I-AAA ADA, please visit www.div1aaa-ada.com. The Division I-AAA ADA is administered by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA), which is in its 48th year. For more information on NACDA and the 13 professional associations that fall under its umbrella, please visit www.nacda.com.

            For the complete 2013 team click here.

 Gonzaga University Division I-AAA ADA Scholar-Athlete Team Selections


Kyle Bankhead,  Graduate, 3.26, Sports Administration

Blake Stepp, Sr., 3.23, Business Administration


Sean Mallon, Jr., 3.28,Political Science


Sean Mallon, Sr., 3.27, Political Science

Stephanie Hawk, Jr., 3.58, Business


Sean Mallon, Graduate, 3.53, Master of Organizational Leadership

Stephanie Hawk, Graduate, 3.84, Master of Business Administration


Jami Bjorklund Schaefer, Jr., 3.94, Business Administration


Jami Bjorklund Schaefer, Sr., 3.95, Business Administration



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