Starr One of 30 Finalist for Lowe's Senior Class Award
Sept. 30, 2008
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - Senior kicker Austin Starr is one of 30 student-athletes chosen as candidates for the inaugural Lowe's Senior CLASS Award in football. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior (in the Football Bowl Subdivision only) and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: Classroom, Character, Community, and Competition.
A finalist for the Lou Groza Award and 2007 All-American, kicker Austin Starr has connected on four field goals and hit all 14 extra-point attempts (64 consecutive dating back to 2006) this season. He is fifth on the school's career field goals (37) and extra points (90) lists and ranks ninth on IU's career points (201) list. After posting a 63.1 average with 15 touchbacks in 2007, he is averaging 67.7 with 11 touchbacks in 24 kickoffs this season.
Last year, Starr was named first team All-Big Ten by the conference media and second team by the coaches to become Indiana's first All-Big Ten first team selection at kicker since Bill Manolopoulos in 1993. He set a school record with 21 field goals (21-for-23) and 48 extra points (48-for-48), both of which had been set by former NFL great Pete Stoyanovich. The Logansport, Ind., native has hit 13-of-15 (86.7) from 40-plus yards and 27-of-32 (84.4) from 30-plus yards in his career.
Off the field, the biology major collected Academic All-America honors from CoSIDA/ESPN The Magazine and earned Academic All-Big Ten honors for the second time in his career. He became the second Hoosier to ever earn All-America honors on and off the field, joining Brad Bomba, who accomplished the feat in 1956.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages those leaders to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact on their circle of influence. This prestigious awards program was launched during the 2001-02 basketball season, added six additional sports in 2007, and has now expanded this year to include NCAA football.
The 2008 list of candidates is loaded with talented football student-athletes who also excel away from the playing field. Twenty-six NCAA colleges and universities and 11 different athletics conferences are represented.
These 30 student-athletes will be narrowed down to 10 finalists midway through the regular season, and those 10 names will then be placed on the official ballot. The ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select the candidate that best exemplifies excellence in the "Four C's" of Classroom, Character, Community, and Competition.
The overall winner of the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award for football will be announced during a 2008-09 post-season college football event.
"Through this award, Lowe's strives to shine the spotlight on student-athletes who are committed to their team and their community," said Tom Lamb, Lowe's vice president of marketing. "Each candidate on this first-ever football list has that commitment. To hear their stories is very encouraging and Lowe's is honored to reward them for all-around achievement."
Sportscaster Dick Enberg, Honorary Chairman of the Lowe's Senior CLASS Award, first conceived the idea of an award for seniors in 2001 in response to the growing trend of men's basketball players leaving school early for the NBA. The award was launched to honor senior student-athletes who remained in college, exhausting their collegiate athletic eligibility, to pursue their college degree.
Lowe's, an official Corporate Partner of the NCAA and NCAA Football, expanded the award program in 2007 to include numerous NCAA Division I sports - men's and women's soccer, men's ice hockey, men's lacrosse, baseball, and softball in addition to men and women's basketball. With the addition of football this year, the number of sports encompassed by the nation's premier award for seniors reaches nine.
The Lowe's Senior CLASS Award is sanctioned by the NCAA, promoted by CBS Sports, and managed by Premier Sports Management.
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