Indiana’s Farrell Among Three Swimmers in Top 30 of NCAA Woman of the Year

  0 Braden Keith | August 26th, 2012 | College, Featured, News

For the last three years (and four out of five), the NCAA’s Woman of the Year winner has been a swimmer. The odds of continuing that trend in 2012 got a whole lot tougher, as just three swimmers advanced from 430 nominees down to the top 10 from each division (30 total): Indiana’s Margaux FarrellSarah Jane Otey from the U.S. Cost Guard Academy, and Alisa Vereshchagin from Kenyon College.

In September, this will be narrowed to nine finalists (three from each division) who will be invited to Indianapolis for an awards ceremony on October 14th, where the 2012 Woman of the Year will be crowned.

This award is designed to encompass every possible aspect of the ideal of the student-athlete. The 30 finalists combined with a 3.87 cumulative GPA in their college careers; 20 NCAA Championships and 110 All-American awards; and they volunteered for 375 organizations while in college.

Among the three swimming finalists is Indiana’s Margaux Farrell. The middle-distance freestyle specialist placed 11th at the NCAA Championships last season in the 200 free, and represented France in London at the Summer Olympics. There, she took a bronze medal as part of France’s 800 free relay. She held a 3.84 GPA, and will now head to USC to pursue a Masters in broadcast journalism.

Otey, from the Division III Cost Guard Academy, is an NCAA Championship qualifier both as a swimmer, and as a member of the crew team (her focus this past season was rowing). Aside from the obvious leadership as a member of one of the military academies, for the duration of the 2009-2010 school year, she traveled to Peru on a humanitarian trip. She was also named the 2012 recipient of the Elite 89 Award at the Division III rowing championships, meaning she had the highest GPA of any senior who qualified for the championship event.

Vereshchagin is a member of the powerful Division III program at Kenyon, and has two individual National Championships to her name: the 200 breaststroke in 2009, and the 100 in 2011. As a senior, she was a first-team member of the Capital One All-American squad, holding a 3.79 GPA double majoring in biology and modern languages and literature. She also volunteered with Special Olympics and the Humane Society, and all of these accomplishments led to her winning the prestigious Pam Smith Award (the North Coast Athletic Conference’s equivalent of the Woman of the Year honor).

All three, along with the other 27 selections, would make fine winners of the award.

Past Winners of Woman of the Year Award:

  • 1991 – Mary Beth Riley, Canisius College
  • 1992 – Catherine Byrne, University of Tennessee
  • 1993 – Nnenna Lynch, Villanova University
  • 1994 – Tanya Jones, University of Arizona
  • 1995 – Rebecca Lobo, University of Connecticut
  • 1996 – Billie Winsett-Fletcher, University of Nebraska
  • 1997 – Lisa Coole, University of Georgia
  • 1998 – Peggy Boutilier, University of Virginia
  • 1999 – Jamila Demby, University of California, Davis
  • 2000 – Kristy Kowal, University of Georgia
  • 2001 – Kimberly A. Black, University of Georgia
  • 2002 – Tanisha Silas, University of California, Davis
  • 2003 – Ashley Jo Rowatt Karpinos, Kenyon College

Full List of 2012 Nomineees

NameDivision ConferenceInstitutionSport(s)
Hillary BachIPac-12 ConferenceArizona State UniversitySoftball
Chyna BalonickIIIndependentHumboldt State UniversityCross Country
Sharwil BellIIISouthern Collegiate Athletic ConferenceRhodes CollegeBasketball
Simone Childs-WalkerIIIMinnesota Intercollegiate Athletic ConferenceCarleton CollegeCross Country, Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field
Christie HopeIIGreat Lakes Valley ConferenceUniversity of Wisconsin, ParksideCross Country, Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field
Grace CollinsIISunshine State ConferenceBarry UniversitySoftball
Margo CramerIIINew England Small College Athletic ConferenceMiddlebury CollegeCross Country, Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field
Margaux FarrellIBig Ten ConferenceIndiana University, BloomingtonSwimming and Diving
Danielle FoxhovenIWest Coast ConferenceUniversity of PortlandSoccer
Kate GriewischIISouth Atlantic ConferenceLenoir-Rhyne UniversityCross Country, Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field
Stacey HagensenIIINorthwest ConferencePacific Lutheran UniversitySoftball
Jazmyne HefflefingerIMid-Eastern Athletic Conf.Delaware State UniversityBowling
Kristin HoffmanIMid-American ConferenceNorthern Illinois UniversityVolleyball
Kendra HuettlIINorthern Sun Intercollegiate ConferenceMinnesota State University, MankatoSoftball
Glory JohnsonISoutheastern ConferenceUniversity of Tennessee, KnoxvilleBasketball
Rebecca KampIIIMichigan Intercol. Ath. Assn.Calvin CollegeVolleyball
Kelsey KittlesonIIIIowa Intercol. Athletic Conf.Luther CollegeSoftball
Lopez Mimendi SofiaIISouth Atlantic ConferenceLincoln Memorial UniversityCross Country, Tennis
Christina MuirIIGreat Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic ConferenceFerris State UniversityCross Country, Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field
Sarah Jane OteyIIINew England Women’s & Men’s Athletic ConferenceU.S. Coast Guard AcademyRowing, Swimming and Diving
Brooke PancakeISoutheastern ConferenceUniversity of AlabamaGolf
Alexi PappasIThe Ivy LeagueDartmouth CollegeCross Country, Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field
Elizabeth PhillipsIIIUniversity Athletic AssociationWashington University (Missouri)Cross Country, Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field
Verena PreikshasIIIndependentCalifornia State University, StanislausTennis
Tanya SchmidtIWest Coast ConferenceSanta Clara UniversityVolleyball
Carol Cayo SmithIIINorthern Athletics ConferenceMilwaukee School of EngineeringBasketball, Tennis, Outdoor Track and Field
Neely SpenceIIPennsylvania State Athletic ConferenceShippensburg University of PennsylvaniaCross Country, Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field
Alisa VereshchaginIIINorth Coast Athletic ConferenceKenyon CollegeSwimming and Diving
Rebecca WadeIConference USARice UniversityCross Country, Indoor and Outdoor Track
Anne WetheIICalifornia Collegiate Athletic AssociationUniversity of California, San DiegoSoccer

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The most common question asked about Braden Keith is "when does he sleep?" That's because Braden has, in two years in the game, become one of the most prolific writers in swimming at a level that has earned him the nickname "the machine" in some circles. He first got his feet …

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