The Northwest Athletic Conference (NWAC) began recognizing the accomplishments of student athletes four years ago with the institution of the President’s Cup and, during its brief four-year history, Big Bend Community College has already established a tradition of excellence.
The Vikings won the inaugural award in 2013, placed second the following two years, and brought the President’s Cup back to Big Bend this year with NWAC Executive Director Marco Azurdia making the presentation Monday afternoon inside the Peter D. DeVries Activity Center on the BBCC campus.
“This is very impressive,” Azurdia said of Big Bend’s academic achievements. “Your performance speaks volumes about your coaches, teachers and support staff. As you receive this award today, my hope is that you will take the time to thank all of those people who have had an impact on your lives both athletically and academically.”
The award is presented each year to the institution whose student-athletes have the best performances in the classroom. Points are awarded for those who complete 36 credits, 72 credits, and for certificate or degree completion. The amount of points awarded are determined by student-athletes GPA.
BBCC again took first place in the NWAC’s Dick McClain Division for schools that compete in seven or fewer sports. Mt. Hood Community College took the cup in the Frank Bosone Division for schools that compete in eight or more sports.
“This award recognizes the efforts of our coaches, our athletes, and pretty much every entity of our college – this could not be achieved without all of their support,” said BBCC Athletic Director Preston Wilks. “It also goes to show the quality and character of the athletes our coaches are recruiting.”
Board of Trustees member Jon Lane, a former Big Bend two-time state wrestling champion and national JUCO wrestling champion for the Vikings, was on hand to applaud the efforts of the BBCC athletes.
“To win this award two out of four times (and placing second twice) is an amazing thing, your part of a tradition and at the same time you’re creating history,” Lane told the crowd of athletes on hand in the Peter D. DeVries Activity Center. “I want to challenge you to give back what you have received … I want you to celebrate your success and remember the good things that were given to you (at BBCC) and give them back.”
Other finalists in the McClain Division included Peninsula College, Lower Columbia College, and Wenatchee Valley College.
Other finalists in the Bosone Division included Lane Community College, Walla Walla Community College, and Southwestern Oregon Community College.