BYU Cougar Club Honors 14 Athletes and Two Teams at Awards Banquet

PROVO, Utah (April, 3, 2002) -- Recipients of BYU's Annual Athletic Awards were honored Wednesday by the Cougar Club at its annual award's banquet.

Headlining the group of award winners is All-American running back Luke Staley, who received the prestigious Dale Rex Memorial Award. In just three years at BYU, Staley rewrote the record books on his way to becoming one of just 12 Consensus All-Americans in BYU football history. This past season Staley led the nation in scoring (15.5 points per game) and yards per carry (8.1) on his way to winning the coveted Doak Walker Award.

Since 1947, the Dale Rex Award has been given annually to the person who has done the most to promote amateur athletics in the state of Utah.

In addition to Staley, 13 other BYU student athletes were recognized for their athletic and academic excellence as well as their service to the community.

Student-Athletes Honored

Stacy Jensen - Women's Basketball - Competitor Award

Mike Wall - Men's Volleyball - Crowd Pleaser Award

Oli Keohohou - Softball - Crowd Pleaser Award

Brandon Doman - Football - Competitor Award

Justin Wilcock - Diving - Cougar Club Memorial Award

Michelle Mahaffey - Volleyball - Kimball Memorial Award

Jeff Harbach - Men's Tennis - Dale R. McCann Team Spirit Award

Carrie Summerhays - Women's Golf - Dale R. McCann Team Spirit Award

Jeff Hansen - Track & Field - Ed Stein Award

Kelly Parkinson-Evanson - Women's Gymnastics - Outstanding Senior Female

Eric Nielsen - Men's Basketball - Floyd Johnson Service Award

Lisa Osguthorpe - Basketball-Floyd Johnson Service Award

Tara Northcutt - Track/Cross Country-Leona Holbrook Spirit of Sport

"The recipients of these awards are among the finest student-athletes in the country," said BYU men's athletic director Val Hale. "Their individual and team accomplishments on and off the field have brought a great deal of respect and recognition to the University."

Two BYU athletic programs were also honored by the Cougar Club as the men and women's team of the year. Established in 1993, the Athletic Team of the Year Award honors the academic and athletic accomplishments of BYU student-athletes and their coaches.

Led by 2001 NCAA Coach of the Year Karl McGown, the men's volleyball team won its second NCAA Championship in the last three years with a crushing 3-0 defeat of UCLA. The men's volleyball team won the national championship in 1999 as well.

Coaches of the 2001 men's volleyball team include Carl McGown, Hugh McCutcheon, and Troy Tanner. Team members include, Jonathan Alleman, Joaquin Acosta, Scott Bunker, Todd Clevenger, Chris Gorny, Jeremiah Larsen, Tim Layton, Hector Lebron, Jaime Mayol, Omar Olmeda, Shawn Olmstead, Matt Olsen, Fernando Pessoa, Luka Slabe, Mike Wall, and Mac Wilson.

The women's team of the year was awarded to National Champion Cross Country team. Led by Patrick Shane, the Cougars have placed either first or second in the nation in each of the past five seasons. At the 2001 National Championships, the Cougars defeated second-place North Carolina State by 86 points, in one of the most dominating victories in NCAA history.

Coaches of the 2001 women's cross country team include Patrick Shane, Craig Poole and Richard Legas. Team members include Kassi Andersen, Lisa Antonelli, Tia Babbel, Amy Lynn Bair, Jaime Lynn Cottle, Nannette Evans, Jolee Gillespie, Jessie Kindschi, Nicole Magelsen, Michaela Manova, Emily Mars, Katie Martin, Katie Moon, Tara Northcutt, Kristen Ogden, Julia Ostler, Jill Rencher, Tiffany Rust, Breanne Sandberg, Anika Smith, Emili Smith, Sarah Taylor, Lindsey Thomsen and Devra Vierkan.

"The Annual Awards Banquet is a celebration of all that our teams and coaches have accomplished," said Cougar Club Executive Director Michael Middleton. "Just looking at the achievements of this year's award winners is an indication of the quality of BYU's athletic program and the direction that it's heading. The Cougar Club is proud to support the success of such outstanding student-athletes and coaches."

Biographical Sketch of Each Award Winner

Luke Staley (football) Dale Rex Memorial Award

Winner of the Doak Walker Award, as the nation's top collegiate running back ... earned every First Team All-America honor ... scored a BYU single-season record 28 touchdowns ... led the nation in yards per carry (8.1) and scoring (15.5 point per game) ... ranked third nationally in rushing (143 yards per contest) ... finished his career as the Cougars' all-time leading (non-kicking) scorer with 288 points.

Stacy Jensen (women's basketball) Competitor Award

A four-year starter at point guard ... led the team in assists and was second in scoring in the year the Cougars won the MWC Tournament and advanced to the NCAA Sweet 16.

Mike Wall (men's volleyball) Crowd Pleaser Award

Junior opposite side hitter who led the Cougars to the 2001 NCAA title ... was named Most Valuable Player of the Final Four for his 16 kills and .323 hitting average in the National Championship match ... selected as an AVCA All-American.

Oli Keohohou (softball) Crowd Pleaser Award

Mountain West Conference Freshman of the Year ... led the nation in batting average (.458) and slugging percentage (.993) ... was a finalist for the Honda Sports Award last season ... plays outfield and first base for the Cougars.

Brandon Doman (football) Competitor Award

All-Conference senior quarterback who guided the nation's most potent offense last season as the Cougars averaged 46.8 points and 547 yards per game ... 2001 Heisman Trophy candidate ... won more consecutive games as a BYU starting QB than any other BYU quarterback except Robbie Bosco.

Justin Wilcock (diving) Cougar Club Memorial Award

All-American diver who has swept all three diving competitions (1-meter, 3-meter, and platform) in both the MWC and WAC ... placed seventh at the 2002 NCAA Championships.

Michelle Mahaffey (volleyball) Kimball Memorial Award

A three-year letter winner ... 3.87 GPA in Physical Education, public school teaching emphasis ... has never has a GPA below 3.81 in five semesters at BYU.

Jeff Harbach (men's tennis) Dale R. McCann Team Spirit Award

Two-time team captain ... came back from a severe injury to lead the team to the 2001 Mountain West Conference Championship.

Carrie Summerhays (women's golf ) Dale R. McCann Team Spirit Award

Two-time Mountain West Player of the Year ... placed in the top 10 finishes in 23 of 39 tournaments ... has won more tournaments (6) than any woman in BYU Golf history.

Jeff Hansen (track & field) Ed Stein Award

Four-time All-American ... 2002 NCAA Indoor Pole Vault Champion (17 feet 11.75 inches) ... holds the BYU all-time record at 18 feet 2.5 inches.

Kelly Parkinson-Evanson (women's gymnastics) Outstanding Senior Female

A three-time All-American ... holds the BYU All-Around Record at 39.700 ... ranks in the top five all-time on each individual women's event (vault, bars, beam, and floor) -- the only BYU gymnast with that distinction.

Eric Nielsen (men's basketball) Floyd Johnson Service Award

Senior forward who played in all 122 games over his four seasons at BYU ... led the Cougars to a win over No. 13 Stanford, with a career high of 29 points ... made the winning basket to defeat Utah in his last regular season home game ... is a volunteer for Children with Cancer Christmas fund and other community groups ... a frequent speaker to youth groups.

Lisa Osguthorpe (basketball) Floyd Johnson Service Award

Four-year letter winner ... helped the Cougars win their first two NCAA Tournament games, defeating Florida and Iowa St ... speaks to elementary school students as part of BYU's "The Buff Don't Puff" program.

Tara Northcutt (track/cross country) Leona Holbrook Spirit of Sport

A six-time All-American ... part of three NCAA Cross Country Championships ... national runner-up (1999) and NCAA champion (2000) in the 10,000-meter.

History of the Dale Rex Award

Dale Rex is remembered by many Utahns as one of the greatest World War II heroes ever to come out of the Beehive State. His valor and accomplishments on the battlefields of Europe make him one of the great legends in Utah history.

Before his meritorious service with the United States Army, Dale was a basketball star for the Cougars. A tall, rugged man, he was the typical "All-American" boy during his days at BYU.

His first battle duty was in France, near the Moselle River. A private with the United States Army's Fifth Infantry Division, Dale manned a machine gun for some 60 consecutive hours in September 1944. This achievement came after he had been in combat only 13 days. The story is also told of Dale wading into the chilly waters of the Moselle River to swim to the aid of several of his Army buddies and pull them to safety.

On November 24, 1944, he was decorated and promoted to sergeant. Less than a month later he was killed in action. For his heroism he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross, a coveted citation for extraordinary courage and valor above and beyond the call of duty.

Although Dale is no longer with us, his example and accomplishments live on. The Dale Rex Memorial Award is given annually to the individual thought by the Cougar Club to have contributed most to amateur athletics in the state of Utah. Many people regard it as the state's highest honor for athletic achievement.

Past Dale Rex Award Recipients

Luke Staley 2001-2002

Mekeli Wesley 2000-2001

Carl McGown 1999--2000

Patrick Shane 1998--1999

Tiffany Lott 1997--1998

Steve Sarkisian 1996--1997

David Houle 1995--1996

Lu Wallace 1994--1995

Elaine Michaelis 1993--1994

Missy Marlowe 1992--1993

Frank Fredericks 1991--1992

Ty Detmer 1990--1991

Ty Detmer 1989--1990

Dave Schulthess 1988--1989

Jeff Chatman 1987--1988

Jason Buck 1986--1987

Greg Marsden 1985--1986

Robbie Bosco 1984--1985

Steve Young 1983--1984

Glen Tuckett 1982--1983

Jim McMahon 1981--1982

Danny Ainge 1980--1981

Marc Wilson 1979--1980

Bobby Clampett 1978--1979

George Sluga 1977--1978

Gifford Nielsen 1976--1977

Karl Tucker 1975--1976

LaVell Edwards 1974--1975

Jim Spencer 1973--1974

Fred Davis 1972--1973

Stan Chynoweth 1971--1972

Ralph Mann 1970--1971

Bill Coltrin 1969--1970

Phil Johnson 1968--1969

Johnny Miller 1967--1968

Phil Odle 1967--1968

Virgil Carter 1966--1967

Steve Kramer 1965--1966

David O. McKay 1964--1965

Pete Witbeck 1963--1964

Eldon Fortie 1962--1963

Merlin Olsen 1961--1962

Gary Earnest 1960--1961

Cecil Baker 1959--1960

Bruce Larsen 1958--1959

Linn Rockwood 1957--1958

Fred "Buck" Dixon 1956--1957

Clarence Robison 1955--1956

J. H. Gardner 1954--1955

Glen Clark 1953--1954

Eddie Kimball 1952--1953

Ray Oliverson 1951--1952

Stan Watts 1950--1951

Joe Nelson 1949--1950

Dick Romney 1948--1949

Floyd Millet 1947--1948

Vadal Peterson 1946--1947