April 14, 2014
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -
Gymnast Kim Jacob and golfer Cory Whitsett, who both have been part of NCAA Championship teams and won NCAA Elite 89 Awards during their University of Alabama careers, have earned Southeastern Conference Postgraduate Scholarships and are now finalists for the prestigious H. Boyd McWhorter Scholar-Athlete Postgraduate Scholarships the league announced Monday.
"We are extremely proud of everything that Cory and Kim have achieved throughout their careers, UA Director of Athletics Bill Battle said. "This latest honor is a testament to their hard work, dedication and commitment to excellence. They are the epitome of what we look for in student-athletes and they are tremendous ambassadors for the University of Alabama and its athletics department."
The McWhorter Scholar-Athlete Postgraduate Scholarship has been presented by the Southeastern Conference to the league's top male and female scholar-athletes since 1986. The SEC will name the 2014 recipients of the H. Boyd McWhorter Scholar-Athlete Post-Graduate Scholarship on May 6.
Each year, the SEC, in conjunction with Corporate Champion sponsor AT&T, provides the league's male and female McWhorter Scholar-Athlete Post-Graduate Scholarship recipients with a $15,000 post-graduate scholarship. The 22 remaining male and female finalists receive a $7,500 postgraduate scholarship.
Jacob is the first gymnast in Southeastern Conference history to be named SEC Gymnastics Scholar Athlete of the Year by a vote of the league's coaches three times (2012, 2013 and 2014). The 2013 NCAA Elite 89 Award winner as the gymnast with highest cumulative grade point average at the NCAA Championships and a Capital One/CoSIDA Academic All-American At-Large First Team member as a junior, Jacob carries a perfect 4.0 grade point average for her Alabama career while majoring in exercise science.
The three-year Scholastic All-American and three-time member of the SEC Academic Honor Roll is a seven-time All-American and a vital part of the Tide's 2011 and 2012 NCAA Championships. Last season, as team captain, she led Alabama to a third-place at the NCAA Championships.
A champion in the gym and the classroom, Jacob is also an active presence in the community, earning a place on the 2013 and 2014 SEC Community Service Teams while volunteering with numerous charities and causes throughout her career.
On track to graduate in May with his undergraduate degree in business, Whitsett carries a perfect 4.0 GPA and is a two-time NCAA Elite 89 Award winner. The 2013 SEC Player of the Year and SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year also earned a place on the 2013 Capital One Academic All-American At-large First Team and was a Cleveland Golf All-American Scholar. A three-time SEC Academic Honor Roll selection, he led his team to the 2013 NCAA Championship. He also spent time as the world's No. 1 amateur while helping lead the United States to victory at the 2013 Walker Cup and Palmer Cup.
The 2013 SEC Player of the Year and 2011 SEC Freshman of the Year, Whitsett has earned first team All-SEC in each of his first three years and was a consensus first team All-American in 2013 and a second-team selection in 2011 and 2012. A member of the 2013 All-Nicklaus Team and the 2011 All-Mickelson Team, Whitsett owns five career individual medalist honors, second most at Alabama and is third in school history in scoring average.
Whitsett owns 16 top-five and 22 top-10 finishes in his career and has won three individual titles at the Linger Longer Invitational, the 2011 Western Refining All-American Classic and the 2013 Aggie Invitational.
The award recipients are chosen by a committee of Faculty Athletics Representatives from the 14 SEC institutions and are honored at the SEC Spring Meetings in Sandestin, Fla., in late May.
Last year's McWhorter Award recipients were Barrett Jones of the Alabama football team and Chelsea Oswald of the Kentucky track & field team.