Lilly King Wins 2nd-Straight Big Ten Athlete of the Year Award

Indiana junior swimmer Lilly King was named the Big Ten Female Athlete of the Year on Thursday, making the second-straight season in which she won the honor. Last year, she became the first woman in Indiana athletics history, across all sports, to win the award. This comes on the back of her third-straight Big Ten Swimmer of the Year honor.

Ohio State wrestler Kyle Snyder repeated on the men’s side, making him the first male athlete to ever repeat as the conference’s athlete of the year.

King is a 6-time NCAA Champion, having swept the 100 and 200 yard breaststrokes in each of her 3 seasons of college swimming so far, and is a 12-time CSCAA All-American. King won the 100 breaststroke in 56.25 in 2018, the fastest time ever swum, and also posted the all-time best in the 200 breaststroke at NCAAs to win in 2:02.60.

Each of the conference’s 14 schools nominated 1 male and 1 female athlete for the award. This season, Indiana was the only school to nominate swimmers of either gender: they also submitted Ian Finnerty for Male Athlete of the Year.

The field of nominees included 10 national champions, 26 All-Americans, 16 individual Big Ten Champions, 16 individuals who won Big Ten Player of the Year honors and five who collected a National Player of the Year accolade.

2018 marks the 4th occasion in which a swimmer won the conference’s Female Athlete of the Year award since it was first given in 1983. Michigan’s Lara Hoiiveld won the honor in 1993, and Minnesota’s Gretchen Hegener shared the honor in 1997. 3 male swimmers have also been honored, all from Michigan: Mike Barrowman in 1991, Tom Dolan in 1995, and Peter Vanderkaay in 2006.

Snyder was honored after winning his 3rd-straight NCAA wrestling title, with his 2018 win coming in the 285-pound weight class.

The Big Ten Athletes of the Year are selected by a panel of conference media members.


Bren Spillane, baseball
Jordyn Poulter, volleyball

Ian Finnerty, swimming
Lilly King, swimming

Josey Jewell, football
Megan Gustafson, basketball

DJ Moore, football
Megan Whittle, lacrosse

Ben Flanagan, cross country/track & field
Katelynn Flaherty, basketball

Michigan State
Tim Ehrhardt, track & field
Sarah Burnham, golf

Shane Wiskus, gymnastics
Kaitlyn Long, track & field

Antoine Lloyd, track & field
Kelly Hunter, volleyball

Justin Jackson, football
Olivia Rosendahl, diving

Ohio State
Kyle Snyder, wrestling
Kelsey Mitchell, basketball

Penn State
Saquon Barkley, football
Haleigh Washington, volleyball

Steele Johnson, diving
Brionne Thomas, track & field

Michael Rexrode, lacrosse
Casey Murphy, soccer

Ollie Hoare, cross country/track & field
Georgia Ellenwood, track & field

1982 – Jim Spivey, Indiana, track and field/cross country
1983 – Ed Banach, Iowa, wrestling
1984 – Sunder Nix, Indiana, track and field
1985 – Barry Davis, Iowa, wrestling
1986 – Chuck Long, Iowa, football
1987 – Steve Alford, Indiana, basketball
1988 – Jim Abbott, Michigan, baseball
1989 – Glen Rice, Michigan, basketball
1990 – Anthony Thompson, Indiana, football
1991 – Mike Barrowman, Michigan, swimming
1992 – Desmond Howard, Michigan, football
1993 – John Roethlisberger, Minnesota, gymnastics
1994 – Glenn Robinson, Purdue, basketball
1995 – Tom Dolan, Michigan, swimming
1996 – Eddie George, Ohio State, football
1997 – Blaine Wilson, Ohio State, gymnastics
1998 – Charles Woodson, Michigan, football
1999 – Luke Donald, Northwestern, golf
2000 – Ron Dayne, Wisconsin, football
2001 – Ryan Miller, Michigan State, ice hockey
2002 – Jordan Leopold, Minnesota, ice hockey
2003 – Amer Delic, Illinois, tennis (co)
2003 – Matt Lackey, Illinois, wrestling (co)
2004 – Damion Hahn, Minnesota, wrestling
2005 – Luis Vargas, Penn State, gymnastics
2006 – Peter Vanderkaay, Michigan, swimming
2007 – Cole Konrad, Minnesota, wrestling
2008 – Brent Metcalf, Iowa, wrestling
2009 – Jake Herbert, Northwestern, wrestling
2010 – Evan Turner, Ohio State, basketball
2011 – David Boudia, Purdue, diving
2012 – Draymond Green, Michigan State, basketball
2013 – Derek Drouin, Indiana, track and field
2014 – David Taylor, Penn State, wrestling
2015 – Logan Stieber, Ohio State, wrestling
2016 – Denzel Valentine, Michigan State, basketball
2017 – Kyle Snyder, Ohio State, wrestling
2018 – Kyle Snyder, Ohio State, wrestling

1983 – Judi Brown, Michigan State, track and field
1984 – Lisa Ishikawa, Northwestern, softball
1985 – Cathy Branta, Wisconsin, cross country/track
1986 – Stephanie Herbst, Wisconsin, cross country/track
1987 – Jennifer Averill, Northwestern, field hockey/lacrosse
1988 – Suzy Favor, Wisconsin, track and field/cross country
1989 – Suzy Favor, Wisconsin, track and field/cross country
1990 – Suzy Favor, Wisconsin, track and field/cross country
1991 – Julie Farrell-Ovenhouse, Michigan State, diving (co)
1991 – Joy Holmes, Purdue, basketball (co)
1992 – MaChelle Joseph, Purdue, basketball
1993 – Lara Hooiveld, Michigan, swimming
1994 – Kristy Gleason, Iowa, field hockey
1995 – Laura Davis, Ohio State, volleyball
1996 – Olga Kalinovskaya, Penn State, fencing
1997 – Kathy Butler, Wisconsin, track and field (co)
1997 – Gretchen Hegener, Minnesota, swimming (co)
1998 – Sara Griffin, Michigan, softball
1999 – Stephanie White-McCarty, Purdue, basketball
2000 – Lauren Cacciamani, Penn State, volleyball
2001 – Katie Douglas, Purdue, basketball
2002 – Christie Welsh, Penn State, soccer
2003 – Perdita Felicien, Illinois, track and field
2004 – Kelly Mazzante, Penn State, basketball
2005 – Jennie Ritter, Michigan, softball
2006 – Tiffany Weimer, Penn State, soccer
2007 – Jessica Davenport, Ohio State, basketball
2008 – Hannah Nielsen, Northwestern, lacrosse
2009 – Maria Hernandez, Purdue, golf
2010 – Megan Hodge, Penn State, volleyball
2011 – Shannon Smith, Northwestern, lacrosse
2012 – Christina Manning, Ohio State, track and field
2013 – Amanda Kessel, Minnesota, ice hockey
2014 – Dani Bunch, Purdue, track and field
2015 – Taylor Cummings, Maryland, lacrosse
2016 – Rachel Banham, Minnesota, basketball
2017 – Lilly King, Indiana, swimming
2018 – Lilly King, Indiana, swimming

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About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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