May 3, 2011
IOWA CITY, Iowa — Senior men’s golfer Vince India and senior women’s basketball player Kachine Alexander have been named the University of Iowa’s nominees for the 2011 Big Ten Male and Female Athletes of the Year. India is now in the running for the 2011 Jesse Owens Male Athlete of the Year honor, while Alexander is up for the 2011 Suzy Favor Female Athlete of the Year award. Winners will be announced in late June, following a vote by a panel of Big Ten media voters.
India, a native of Deerfield, Ill., earns Iowa’s top male athlete honors after putting together the best individual season in Hawkeye men’s golf history. India became just the second golfer in school history to win the prestigious Les Bolstad Trophy, awarded by the Big Ten Conference at the end of the season to the male golfer who records the lowest stroke average during the season (fall and spring). India’s 71.08 stroke average is the ninth-lowest in the trophy’s history, dating back to 1974.
Earlier today, India became only the second golfer in school history to be named Big Ten Player of the Year. India, along with fellow senior Brad Hopfinger, was named first team all-Big Ten, becoming the first Iowa golfers since 1996 to earn first team honors.
India captured first place in three different tournaments as a senior, winning the Golfweek Conference Challenge, the Royal Oaks Intercollegiate and the Hawkeye-Taylormade Invitational. He is just the third player in school history to win three or more tournaments in a single season.
India has played in nine stroke-play tournaments this year and has finished in the top-15 in every competition, including eight top-10 finishes.
As a member of the Iowa men’s golf team, India has helped lead the Hawkeyes from a national ranking of 155th as a freshman to as high as No. 9 this season. The Hawkeyes have won five team titles this year, including four-straight during the fall season.
Alexander also spent her senior season rewriting the Iowa records books. The Minneapolis, Minn., native was named honorable mention All-America by the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association and the Associated Press. She earned the same awards last season, giving her more All-America honors than any other women’s basketball player in Iowa history. Alexander also won the first ever Premier Player of College Basketball Award.
In 2010-11, Alexander became the first player in Iowa history, and just the fifth player in Big Ten history, to collect 1,000 career points, 800 career rebounds and 300 career assists. She was the top rebounding guard in the country, as a senior, with 9.5 boards per contest. She also broke school records for free throws made and attempted in a single season (148-199), free throw percentage in a single game (10-10, 1.000) and was one double-double shy of tying Lisa Long’s school record mark of 35. Alexander was a first team all-Big Ten selection and was also one of five players named to the Big Ten all-Defensive team.
Alexander was part of a senior class that led Iowa to four-straight 20-win seasons, four upper-division finishes in the Big Ten and four-consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances.
Big Ten Directors of Athletics approved a recommendation of the sports information directors to establish a Big Ten Athlete of the Year. It was named for Jesse Owens in 1982. In 1983, the AD’s approved a separate athlete of the year award for women’s athletics. In 1991-92, the women’s award was officially named after Suzy Favor.