May 12, 2011
COLLEGE STATION, Texas - Among the degree candidates at the Texas A&M commencement exercises this Friday and Saturday (May 13-14) at Reed Arena are 50 Aggie student-athletes.
"I am very proud of these young people who have taken advantage of an opportunity to continue to play a sport they love, and to earn a degree from an outstanding university," Bill Byrne, Director of Athletics for Texas A&M, said. "These young people have put in great effort, time and dedication to reach this achievement. Their families and people who have supported them throughout their lives are to be commended as well."
"We talk about Building Champions, and this pertains to all areas of life," Byrne added. "Many of these young people have added value to our wonderful community by participating in outreach projects and speaking to our youth about the importance of education. Many earned championship rings in their respective sports and that is to be celebrated. But receiving a quality education from a great institution like Texas A&M is an even greater accomplishment. Some of these young people are the first college graduates from their respective families. All of us in the athletics department join with the families of our student-athletes in saying job well done."
In the school year 2010-11, 131 Aggie student-athletes have earned their degrees.
On the various playing fields, five Aggie teams have won Big 12 Championships thus far this school year with men's and women's track and field competing this weekend in the Big 12 Championships, while baseball is on top of the league standings heading into play this weekend and the women's softball team is poised to make another run in the NCAA Championships heading into the final weekend of Big 12 play.
The men's and women's tennis programs are hosting the NCAA first and second rounds this weekend and look to make a deep run in the national championships with the men's squad seeded No. 9 overall. The women's golf team has advanced to the national championships and will serve as hosts at its home course, Traditions, this next week. The men's golf team, currently ranked No. 6 in the land, will compete at the NCAA Regionals with hopes of making another run at a national title. Meanwhile, the men's outdoor track and field team is currently ranked No. 1 in the country and the women's outdoor track and field squad is ranked No. 2 in the land and both squads will be looking for a third straight National Championship.
In National Championship conversations, the women's basketball team brought home the national title this year and the women's western equestrian squad won the national crown again in 2011, its third straight and the program's ninth overall national championship.
Just missing national titles, but making a lot of noise in their respective NCAA Championships, the men's indoor track and field team finished second and the women's indoor track and field team finished fifth at the NCAA Championships hosted by Texas A&M University. In the pool and diving well, the women's swimming and diving team finished 10th at the NCAA Championships and the men's swimming and diving program finished 13th at nationals. The men's basketball team finished tied for third in the Big 12 standings and reached the NCAA Championships for the sixth straight year and finished ranked No. 24 by the Associated Press.
Back in the fall, the women's soccer team finished the season ranked No. 16 after advancing to the NCAA Championships while the football team won a share of the Big 12 South Division crown and advanced to the AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic in Arlington.
All ceremonies are open to the public at Reed Arena without need of tickets according to university officials.
MAY 2011 STUDENT-ATHLETE GRADUATES
Matt Allen Football
Danny Baker Football
Ben Bass Football
Cody Beyer Football
*Julia Boland Women's Golf
Justin Brantly Football
Kenny Brown Football
*Damitria Buchanan Women's Basketball
Marshall Carrell Men's Basketball
Tara Christiansen Equestrian
Sydney Colson Women's Basketball
Nicholas Cook Men's Track & Field
Nikita Denisyako Men's Swimming & Diving
*Brandon Dyer Baseball
Nacho Elvira Men's Golf
Katy Eudaly Women's Track & Field
*Ashley Freeman Women's Golf
Kevin Gonzalez Baseball
Stephanie Harmon Equestrian
Tran Howell Men's Track & Field
John Hurley Men's Golf
De'Lon Isom Men's Track & Field
Bryant Lach Men's Golf
Bianca Lamb Equestrian
Porscha Lucas Women's Track & Field
Marcus Lunt Men's Tennis
Steven Martin Baseball
Terrence McCoy Football
Kasey McNorton Women's Track & Field
Christina Munoz Women's Track & Field
*Emily Neal Women's Swimming & Diving
Brett Parsons Baseball
Jenna Pine Equestrian
*Elze' Potgeiter Women's Tennis
Hillary Pustka Women's Track & Field
Cara Quayle Volleyball
Kara Rau Softball
Yasmine Regis Women's Track & Field
Kristen Schevikhoven Volleyball
Caleb Shofner Baseball
Carson Smith Men's Track & Field
Maria Sommer Women's Swimming & Diving
Kelsey Spittler Softball
Randi Standley Equestrian
Derrick Stephens Football
Sarah (Woods) Stratton Women's Swimming & Diving
Ryan Tannehill Football
Nathan Walkup Men's Basketball
Ty Warren Football
Garrick Williams Football
*Denotes graduate degree.