8 Illini Swimmers and Divers Honored as Big Ten Distinguished Scholars

ROSEMONT, Ill. – The Big Ten Conference recognized 49 Illini student-athletes as Big Ten Distinguished Scholars, announced the conference office Wednesday. Illinois boasts recipients from 14 different sports, led by eight from the women’s swimming and diving team.

The complete conference list of 779 includes student-athletes from every institution and 38 different sports who have earned a minimum grade-point average (GPA) of 3.7 or higher for the previous academic year.

The 2014-15 class of Distinguished Scholar Award recipients includes 119 student-athletes who maintained a perfect 4.0 GPA during the previous academic term, including nine honorees from Illinois which is the most since the award began being awarded in 2009.

In February of 2008, Big Ten Faculty Representatives established a conference academic recognition to supplement the Academic All-Big Ten program. Similar to the Academic All-Big Ten honor, Distinguished Scholar Award recipients must be letterwinners in at least their second academic year at their institution.

However, the Distinguished Scholar Award encompasses only student-athletes with a minimum GPA of 3.7 or higher for the previous academic year, excluding summer school. The Academic All-Big Ten threshold is a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher for a student-athlete’s academic career.

Illinois has totaled 284 all-time honorees during the seven years in which the Big Ten Distinguished Scholar award has been handed out.

2014-15 Big Ten Distinguished Scholars from Illinois Swimming & Diving (4.0 GPA Honorees in Bold)

Hailey Booth Swimming & Diving Sr. Psychology
Jennifer Coady Swimming & Diving Jr. Accountancy
Kayla Dlugopolski Swimming & Diving Sr. Psychology
Megan Marchuk Swimming & Diving Sr. Industrial Engineering
Callan McDermott Swimming & Diving Sr. Community Health
Alison Meng Swimming & Diving Sr. Kinesiology
Erika Murphy Swimming & Diving Sr. Finance
Gabbie Stecker Swimming & Diving So. Kinesiology


Swimming news courtesy of University of Illinois Swimming & Diving.

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About Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh

Lauren Neidigh is a former NCAA swimmer at the University of Arizona (2013-2015) and the University of Florida (2011-2013). While her college swimming career left a bit to be desired, her Snapchat chin selfies and hot takes on Twitter do not disappoint. She's also a high school graduate of The …

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