Senior Kim Jacob (Raleigh, N.C.) of the University of Alabama was named the Honda Sports Award winner for Gymnastics as announced by Chris Voelz, Executive Director of THE Collegiate Women Sports Awards (CWSA) today.
The Honda Sports Award is presented annually by the CWSA to the top women athletes in 12 NCAA- sanctioned sports and signifies “the best of the best in collegiate athletics”. With this honor, Jacob becomes a finalist for the Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year and the prestigious 2014 Honda Cup. Jacob was chosen by a vote of administrators from over 1,000 NCAA member schools. Finalists included Katherine Grable (Arkansas), Bridget Sloan (Florida) and Emily Wong (Nebraska).
“It was a huge honor just to be considered for this prestigious award, “Jacob said. “I remember when my teammate Kayla Hoffman earned The Honda Award during my freshman year and thinking at the time what an amazing honor it was for her. I never would have dreamed that this award would come my way. I am beyond honored and proud, and I can't thank all those who have helped me during my journey to this point in my life enough. I am extremely humbled and blessed.”
Jacob took home the highest individual honor at the 2014 NCAA Gymnastics Championship, winning the NCAA All-Around title. The senior competed in 11 of 12 events at the national championships, the most of any gymnast in the meet. She is an 11-time NCAA All-American, including four first-team honors in 2014, the most in the nation.
A first-team All-Southeastern Conference (SEC) honoree, she's also a model student-athlete in the classroom after being named the SEC Gymnastics Scholar-Athlete of the Year for a conference-record third year in a row. The 2013 NCAA Elite 89 Award winner, she is a 2014 SEC Postgraduate Scholarship winner and a finalist for the H. Boyd McWhorter SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year award. Most recently, Jacob was inducted into the 26th order of XXXI, the University of Alabama elite women's leadership honorary.
“Kim has enjoyed a tremendous career here at The University of Alabama and has excelled at the highest level in the classroom, in the gym and in the world outside of both,” UA head coach Sarah Patterson said. “She is an extraordinary young woman who is the very essence of what this award is all about. More than that, she has been the heart of our program from the first moment she stepped on campus. She is a servant leader not only as part of our team, but in the larger community around her, and I couldn’t be prouder of her and all she’s accomplished.”
The CWSA presents the Honda Sports Award annually to top women student-athletes in 12 NCAA-sanctioned sports. Honda Sports award winners will be presented with the honor during on-campus presentations throughout the year and all Honda Sports award winners become a finalist for the prestigious 2014 Honda Cup award presented in June.
Two student-athletes from the sport of gymnastics have gone on to win the prestigious Honda Cup, Courtney Kupets (University of Georgia) in 2009 and Missy Marlowe (University of Utah) in 1992.
THE Collegiate Women Sports Awards has honored the nation’s top NCAA women athletes for 37 years, recognizing superior athletic skills, leadership, academic excellence and eagerness to participate in community service. Since commencing its sponsorship in 1986, Honda has provided more than $2.7 million in institutional grants to the universities of the award winners and nominees to support women’s athletics programs at the institutions.