April 8, 2013
Alabama gymnastics head coach Sarah Patterson received the Amanda Grace Taylor Watson Distinctive Image Award from the Capstone Men and Women prior to Monday's practice.
The award is usually given during the University of Alabama's Honors Day, which was last Friday, but Patterson and the Crimson Tide were preparing for the NCAA Tuscaloosa Regional Championship, which Alabama won on Saturday.
Upon learning that Patterson would not be present at the Honors Day ceremonies, the Capstone Men and Women decided to surprise the long-time coach with the accolade with her team and staff looking on.
"I was completely surprised when the Capstone Men and Women came into to the practice gym this afternoon," Patterson said. "I thought maybe it was something for one of our ladies. Needless to say I am extremely honored and humbled by this award and all that it represents."
The award is awarded annually by the UA Capstone Men and Women organization. The award, named in memory of former Capstone Woman Amanda Grace Taylor Watson, is given to persons who exemplify the essence of the University in all aspects of life.
Past recipients include Dr. Robert E. Witt, UA chancellor and former UA president and Dr. Chuck Karr, the Dean of Alabama's College of Engineering as well as Dr. Tim Hebson, UA dean of students and Dr. Pamela Parker, former vice president for advancement.
Patterson is in her 35th season as the Tide's head coach. She led the Tide to its NCAA-best 28th NCAA Regional title on Saturday which earned Alabama its 31st consecutive NCAA Championship berth. The two-time defending champions depart for Los Angeles next week.