Record 65 student-athletes earn winter Academic All-Big Ten accolades

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – A school record 65 Penn State student-athletes from eight winter teams have earned Academic All-Big Ten honors. The previous mark for the winter sports season was 64 honorees, set in 2013.

The 65 winter honorees brings Penn State’s 2013-14 total to 149 (from 15 sports).

Head coach Tim Murphy’s women’s swimming and diving team led Penn State’s winter sports with 16 Academic All-Big Ten recipients while the men’s swimming and diving team had 13. Coach Guy Gadowsky’s men’s ice hockey team garnered 15 academic all-conference selections, the most in the conference. Coach Jeff Thompson’s women’s gymnastics team had six Academic All-Big Ten honorees, the second-highest total in the conference, and Coach Patrick Chambers’ men’s basketball team was tied for third with three Academic all-conference honorees.

Of the 65 Winter Academic All-Big Ten honorees, many achieved All-American status in the competitive arena as well.  Four of head coach Cael Sanderson’s Academic All-Big Ten wrestlers also earned All-America honors: Matt Brown (West Valley City, Utah), James English (York), Nico Megaludis (Murrysville) and David Taylor (St. Paris, Ohio). Taylor won his second NCAA title and second Hodge Trophy Award as the nation’s top wrestler this past season.

Women’s gymnast Kassidy Stauder (Palmerton) was an All-American in the balance beam and men’s gymnast Craig Hernandez (Libertyville, Ill.) earned All-America honors in the pommel horse. Women’s swimmer Alyson Ackman (Montreal) was a first team All-American. Lady Lion basketball standout Ariel Edwards (Elmont, N.Y.) earned first-team All-Big Ten accolades and Nittany Lion basketball standout Tim Frazier (Houston) also was an all-conference honoree in 2013-14.

In its 21st year of full membership in the Big Ten, Penn State has had a total of 4,626 Academic All-Big Ten honorees through this winter.

The academic honors come at the conclusion of an outstanding winter season that helped boost Penn State to No. 2 in the most recent Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup standings. The Nittany Lion men’s and women’s fencing teams claimed their 13th combined National Championship and the wrestling team win its fourth consecutive NCAA title. The wrestlers also won their fourth-straight Big Ten Championship and the women’s basketball team won the Big Ten regular season crown for the third consecutive year. In addition, the Penn State men’s and women’s gymnastics teams advanced to their respective NCAA Championships.

The women’s indoor track and field team also won the Big Ten Championship. The Academic All-Big Ten honorees for the men’s and women’s track and field teams will be included in the spring and at-large sports, as will fencing and women's hockey.

Last Updated April 24, 2014