Grant and Russell Earn Academic All-District

Seniors Aaron Russell and Amanda Grant were named to the 2003 Verizon Academic All-District VIII Women's At-Large First Team on Thursday. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)

Long Beach, Calif. (May 22, 2003) -- Senior Amanda Grant of the BYU women's swim team and senior Aaron Russell of the men's diving team were named to the 2003 Verizon Academic All-District VIII At-Large First Team on Thursday.

Grant, a political science major with an impressive 3.97 cumulative grade point average, was one of 10 women athletes in the district to receive a first team citation.

As captain of the Cougars' women's swim team Grant helped the Cougars claim their fourth consecutive Mountain West Conference Championship title this season, swam to four individual wins, 15 top-three finishes, was named MWC Swimmer of the Week 11/12/02, and received the Cougar Club's Outstanding Senior Female Athlete Award.

Russell, a graduate student in Portuguese, was one of 10 men receiving first team nods.

Russell received first-team All-America honors after finishing fourth on the one-meter springboard at the NCAA Championships, and being named second-team All-America on the three-meter. It is the second time that Russell has earned Academic All-District VIII honors. The first time was in 2000, when he then went on to be named a Verizon Academic All-American.

To qualify as a candidate for the Academic All-America honor, a student athlete must carry a minimum 3.20 cumulative grade point average, be a starter or a significant reserve, and be in their second season at the school. The team was selected by members of CoSIDA in California, Hawai'i, Alaska, British Columbia, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, Nevada, and Utah, from among the different schools on the District VIII ballot.

Grant, Russell and the rest of the first-team student athletes will now move on to the Verizon At-Large Academic All-America ballot. The winners from the national team will be announced on Tuesday, June 10 for the men, and Thursday, June 12 for the women.