Nick Symmonds named as Finalist for the Ad Rutschman Award; Winner to be named at The Oregon Sports Award Ceremony on January 25

Salem - Sophomore Nick Symmonds (Boise, ID/Bishop Kelly) has been named as a finalist for the Rutschman Award. Nick (pictured left) has not lost a track race since his sophomore year in high school. As a freshman at Willamette Nick was the NCAA Division III Champion in the 1500 meter and 800 meter events. Nick earned Willamette their 6th place team finish at the NCAA DIII Championsips by scoring 20 points on his own.

In addition, Nick has won the Stanford Cardinal Qualifier in 2003 and two races at the University of Oregon's Hayward Field, including the prestigious Twilight Mile.

What is the Ad Rutschman and Oregon Sports Award Ceremony?

In 2002, Nike and The Portland Tribune joined forces in reviving one of
Oregon's premier sports recognition events, The Hayward Banquet of champions. For a half-century the banquet annually honored Oregon's best
amateur and professional athletes before being discontinued in 1997.

In place of the Hayward Banquet, an upbeat program on the stage of Nike's ultramodern Tiger Woods Center has drawn nearly 700 for the ceremonies the last two years. This year, Art Schwab Tires and Standard TV & Appliances, along with KATU, have joined forces as major sponsors.

Awards continued from the days of the Hayward Banquet are:
Bill Hayward Male and Female Amateur Athletes of the Year
Harry Glickman Professional Athlete of the Year
Johnny Carpenter Prep Male & Female Athlete of the Year
Slats Gill Award for outstanding coaching or sports administration
George Pasero Team Award
Nike's Steve Prefontaine Award

In 2002, organizers added an eighth honor, the Ad Rutschman Small College Male & Female Athlete of the Year. The award was named in honor of Linfield College's longtime football coach and director of athletics.Criteria for the Rutschman Award is attached.

This year's ceremonies, held on Sunday, January 25, will gain additional prominance with Portland television station KATU (Channel 2) broadcasting the ceremonies live in a 90-minute prime time program. The KATU broadcast will go statewide through the station's affiliates, cable TV and broadcast agreeements with other downstate independent television outlets.

Willamette's Nick Lubisich, an NCAA Div. III All-Amercan pitcher and an All-NWC basketball player, was the first male winner of the Rutschman Award in 2002. Other WU student-athletes previously nominated were soccer player Buffy Morris (2002), Ann Merten, soccer, and Aaron Young, cross country, both in 2003.

Nick Symmonds

Nick Symmonds