|BYU-IDAHO ATHLETIC TEAMS TO REMAIN RICKS VIKINGS
Athletic teams at Brigham Young University-Idaho will continue to be known as the Ricks College Vikings during their last season of play. Athletic Director Garth Hall says the school will retain the Ricks College Viking name as a tribute to the college, coaches and players that produced successful athletic teams. Besides the emotional attachment to Ricks, it would have been expensive to change names on uniforms for one final year of play, Hall adds.
A gala evening paying tribute to Ricks College athletics is planned for Friday, March 1, 2002, in the Hart Auditorium. The general public will be invited to participate. "It will be an important evening," Hall says. "We'll honor each sport that has been a part of Ricks College athletics. We will reminisce, share stories and pictures from the past ... in short, it will be a night to enjoy."
Additionally, as each sport concludes competition, former athletes and coaches will be invited to return to campus and will be recognized at the last home game or meet.
Volleyball: The final volleyball game was Oct. 20 against Snow College.
Football: The final home football game was Oct. 27 against Arizona Western College. (Real Dairy Bowl pending.)
Cross Country: The regional finals in cross country was Oct. 27 in Rexburg, and former cross country runners will be invited to return to campus. Track and field athletes were invited to participate.
Wrestling: The regional wrestling tournament Feb. 1 will bring former wrestlers to campus.
Basketball: Both men's and women's basketball will be celebrated with the final home games March 2.
Softball: The final women's fast-pitch softball game will be April 20.
Baseball: The final men's baseball game will take place May 4.
TEAM ACHIEVEMENTS IN 2000-2001
Ricks goes into its final year of intercollegiate athletic competition with one of the greatest groups of coaches ever assembled. Their accomplishments in 2000-2001 reflect their entire careers.
In his 19th year as head coach of Ricks football, Ron Haun is the second most winning active coach in junior college football with 168 wins against 39 losses, 81.2 percent wins. Last year's team won the NJCAA Academic National Championship again with a team GPA of 3.17. There were six Academic All Americans on the team, and two NJCAA All Americans, including NJCAA Offensive Player of the Year, Marc Dunn of Brigham City, Utah. The Vikings finished 9th on the 2000 NJCAA poll. [They gained the number one rank October 16, 2001.]
Volleyball coach JoAnn Reeve is the "dean" of coaches at the college, having completed 26 years with Lady Viking volleyball. She is a member of the NJCAA Coaches Hall of Fame, and one of only three junior college coaches to amass more than 800 career wins. She will pass the 900 mark this season. Last year's team finished third in the region and tenth on the final NJCAA poll.
Cross country coach Doug Stutz is the man with the dynasty. His women's team won a sixth consecutive NJCAA championship last year, led by Kristen Ogden's individual title run. The men's team won the national title for a second year in a row. Nine athletes earned All American honors. Both teams won NJCAA Academic National Championships with four Academic All Americans crowned. Stutz was named NJCAA Coach of the Year.
Bob Christensen's seventeenth year of coaching wrestling at Ricks saw yet another Viking team finish in the top five nationally, bringing home the third place trophy from the NJCAA tournament. Christensen surpassed 200 career dual meets wins last season, improving his career record to 202-62, and winning percentage of 76.5 percent. He saw seven athletes earn All American honors, two of them as NJCAA champions. His team was just as adept in the classroom, winning the NJCAA Academic National Championship.
In women's basketball, Lori Woodland's 13-year record at Ricks improved to 279-114, and winning percentage of 71 percent. Her team finished second in the league, was ranked fifteenth in the nation, and Lori was named Region 18 Coach of the Year with four all conference players and one All American. Additionally, Lori's team carried a 3.03 GPA in the classroom.
Clyde Nelson's eighth year of coaching men's basketball at Ricks saw his record grow to 173 wins against 84 losses, a winning percentage of 67 percent. He coached two all conference players and had one Academic All American as his team carried a 3.20 GPA in the classroom, third best in the nation.
Jerry Schlegelmilch's tenth year as baseball coach at Ricks College, was also his last. "Schleg" has moved to Southern Virginia University to begin a baseball program there. His 2001 team gave him his 290th career win, a trip to the Region 18 tournament, and Region 18 Coach of the Year honors. He coached three Academic All Americans as his team posted a 3.18 GPA, third best in the nation.
First year softball coach Leli'a Roberts coached the Lady Vikings to 12 wins in the always tough Scenic West Athletic Conference. Three athletes earned All Conference honors. The team carried an impressive 3.15 GPA in the classroom.
Doug Stutz took over as head coach of track and field at Ricks College from Ferron Sondregger and nothing changed. The Vikings roared to another Region 18 championship with Stutz being named Region 18 Coach of the Year. Both teams finished in the top ten nationally on the track. They did even better in the classroom, winning the NJCAA Academic National Championship for men's and women's teams, with nine athletes earning Academic All American honors and seven being named NJCAA All Americans.
2000-2001 ACADEMIC ALL-AMERICANS
All eleven of the Ricks College athletic teams were awarded National Academic All American Team honors.
Fourteen athletes were noted as Distinguished Academic All-Americans (GPA 3.80 or higher): Pat Williams, 3.98, football; Tyson Teeples, 3.96, track; David Cousin, 3.94, football; Stephanie Hart, 3.94, cross country and track; Benjamin Wise, 3.93, wrestling; Lindsey Johnson, 3.91, basketball; Beau Seil, 3.89, baseball; Kody Kraus, 3.88, track; Joseph Donaldson, 3.86, basketball; Rachel Henry, 3.86, track; C. Nathan Allen, 3.85, football; Ben Holloway, 3.82, football; Kristen Ogden, 3.81, cross country and track; Darrick Neibaur, 3.80, baseball; and Jeremy Lewis, 3.80, wrestling.
Recognized as Academic All Americans (GPA 3.60-3.79) were: Michael Sumko, 3.78, football; Amanda Wintch, 3.78, track; Jeff England, 3.76, baseball; Courtney Allen, 3.73, cross country and track; Erin Ricks, 3.73, track; Lisa Whiting, 3.63, cross country and track; and Steven Barlow, 3.60, football.
2001-2002 AWARD NOMINEES SOUGHT
The Alumni Association annually honors several outstanding Ricks alumni. The Alumni Council encourages participation in nominating those whose achievements and recognitions are noteworthy.
Distinguished Alumni Award for Professional Accomplishment and/or Humanitarian Service: These two awards are presented for highest professional and humanitarian distinction. The individual(s) considered must have received noteworthy recognition regionally, nationally, or internationally in his or her profession or for humanitarian service over a sustained period of time. This award is presented to an individual or couple who have excelled together or individually in reaching a level of achievement. This is given to alumni over 45 years of age.
Outstanding Young Alumni Award: This award has the same qualifications as the Distinguished Alumni Award, but is given to alumni under 45 years of age.
Eliza R. Snow Award for the Performing and Fine Arts: Presented to recognize and honor alumni who have excelled in the performing and fine arts either professionally or as an amateur. The individual, or couple, should be generally recognized in the community over a sustained period of time.
Alumni Outstanding Educator Award: Awarded to alumni of BYU-Idaho/Ricks College who has dedicated at least 10 years as a professional teacher in the public schools and who is currently employed in the field of education.
Distinguished Emeritus Service Award: Presented to individuals or couples who have led exemplary lives in the Church, raised worthy families, and who have served as good examples.
All nominees for the above awards should exhibit the highest moral character, honesty, and highmindedness taught by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
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