BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Just over a month after she drained a four-foot putt to give the University of Alabama its first NCAA Women's Golf Championship, Crimson Tide senior Brooke Pancake has been named the 2011-12 Roy F. Kramer Female Athlete of the Year by a vote of the Southeastern Conference's athletics directors.
"I am truly honored to be recognized by the Southeastern Conference," Pancake said. "Over the past month, I've had the opportunity to accomplish so many of my goals as an amateur and collegiate golfer, but this is truly humbling. It is hard to believe I have played my last round at Alabama; it has been such a privilege to compete for the Crimson Tide and be a part of the SEC's tradition of excellence."
In addition to leading the Tide to the 2012 NCAA title, Pancake played for United States National Team in the recent Curtis Cup and qualified for the 2012 U.S. Open. She earned Alabama‘s eighth Honda Award, and first by a women's golfer, earlier this month and was also named the 2012 Capital One/CoSIDA Academic All-American of the Year.
"What a tremendous honor for Brooke to complete her collegiate career," UA head coach Mic Potter said. "She accomplished so much while she was at Alabama and was critical to our success both this season and throughout her career. She was a great ambassador for our program and exactly what you want in a student-athlete, both on and off the course."
The Chattanooga, Tenn., native is the seventh Alabama female athlete and first UA golfer to be named SEC Female Athlete of the Year, joining track star Lillie Leatherwood (1987) and gymnasts Penney Hauschild (1985), Dee Foster (1990), Andreé Pickens (2002) and Jeana Rice (2004). Alabama's seven female honorees is the SEC record for this award.
Alabama also leads the league in total Roy F. Kramer Awards with 11 combined men's and women's honors. Three Alabama football players have been honored, including Cornelius Bennett (1987), Derrick Thomas (1989) and Mark Ingram (2010), while men's basketball player Reggie King was the first UA student-athlete acknowledged in 1979.
"I'd like to say how very proud we are of Brooke and all she has accomplished," UA Director of Athletics Mal Moore said. "She excelled at the highest level in all facets of her Alabama career and has been a tremendous ambassador for the Crimson Tide. The Southeastern Conference stands at the forefront of collegiate athletics and to have Brooke earn this award, and for Alabama to lead the league in this honor, is a point of great pride."
The 2012 NCAA individual runner-up, Pancake is a three-time All-American, garnering first-team honors in 2011 and 2012. She finished her career with a 73.08 scoring average, the second best in UA history, and posted a 72.52 stroke average in 2011-12.
Pancake completed her bachelor's degree in marking this past May with a perfect 4.0 grade point average. She won the 2011 Edith Cummings Munson Award given annually to the golfer with the highest grade point average among first-team All-Americans) as well as the 2010 NCAA Elite 88 Award which is given to the student-athlete with highest GPA at each of NCAA championships. She is also a three-time Southeastern Conference Women's Golf Scholar-Athlete of the Year and a three-time NGCA Scholar Athlete.
Anthony Davis, who led Kentucky to a national championship this season, was named the SEC Male Athlete of the Year.
"Anthony and Brooke are true examples of outstanding student-athletes. They have competed at the highest level of collegiate athletics and through their hard work, dedication and commitment to excellence have been successful in their endeavors," said SEC Commissioner Mike Slive. "They are outstanding representatives of their universities and this conference. The SEC is proud to honor them for their accomplishments and wish them the best in their future endeavors."
The SEC Athletes of the Year Awards were first presented in 1976 for men and 1984 for women. The award was renamed the Roy F. Kramer Athletes of the Year in 2004 to honor the former commissioner who served the conference from 1990-2002.