Laurie Bollig

2011-12 Senior CLASS Award winners reflect on award’s meaning

by Laurie Bollig July 05, 2012 in Baseball


They’ve graduated with degrees that will serve them for the rest of their lives. They’ve left lasting impressions on the college communities they have served for four years. They have competed in intercollegiate athletics at the highest levels. They are the nation’s most outstanding senior student-athletes in 10 NCAA Division I sports. And this is what the Senior CLASS Award means to them:

Brian Holt, Creighton, Men’s Soccer: “It is important to value personal character, academic success and community involvement of athletes as well as their athletic accomplishments, and the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award does just that.”

Lizzy Simonin, Memphis, Women’s Soccer: “This award speaks volumes of what this program, university and city are about. Winning the Senior CLASS Award is a huge honor itself, but the belief from everyone around me has surpassed the importance of this award.

Kanani Danielson, Hawaii, Volleyball: “It’s an honor to be selected out of the many student-athletes that were recognized. Much credit goes out to those who have helped me on this amazing volleyball voyage.

Kirk Cousins, Michigan State, Football: “This award represents its namesake – class – and anytime you’re associated with something that talks about class, integrity and character, it’s very humbling. To even be in the running for this award, with all of the other amazing student-athletes in this country and their impressive accomplishments and credentials, is very special.”

Nnemkadi Ogwumike, Stanford, Women’s Basketball: “Character is a quality that is constant and unchangeable across a lifetime. If you have character, it’s represented by strong values.”

Robbie Hummel, Purdue, Men’s Basketball: “I’ve always tried to do things the right way and be a good guy. Coach Painter tells us that the air will eventually come out of the ball and how we conduct ourselves on and off the court is extremely important.”

Jack Connolly, Minnesota Duluth, Hockey: “Winning the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award means a lot to me and the UMD hockey program. I always try to do my best in everything that I do whether it be hockey, school or helping out in the community. I am truly honored and proud to receive this prestigious award.”

CJ Costabile, Duke, Lacrosse: “To be nominated alone for this award is really an honor, but to actually win the award is surreal. To be recognized athletically, academically and for character is really a tremendous honor.”

Valerie Arioto, California, Softball: “While I have enjoyed my softball accomplishments and will never forget my experiences with my teammates, it’s giving back to my community and the degree I received from the University of California that mean so much to me.”

James Ramsey, Florida State, Baseball: “Coming back for my senior year was more than a baseball decision. All I have been trying to do during my time as a student-athlete is to be a good steward of what I have been given, to make sure that I am able to give back because one day all the memories will fade but the impact you are able to have on other people is what will hopefully last forever.”