Kansas Student-Athlete Advisory Committee Receives Division I SAAC Award of Excellence

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The NCAA announced Thursday that the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) at the University of Kansas is the spring 2011 recipient of the Division I SAAC Award of Excellence. This award is intended to showcase campus SAAC’s that have made great contributions to their respective communities through service, sportsmanship, unity, leadership and/or growth.

“We take great pride in our student athlete advisory committee and this award is an indication of how hard all of our student-athletes and staff work together,” said Sheahon Zenger, Kansas Athletics Director. “They promote a positive image and work diligently in the university and community. We want our student-athletes to be leaders – now and after KU – both in competition and in life. This honor reflects our commitment and success. I also want to recognize and thank the staff that works with SAAC for their efforts.”

The NCAA presents the award to only one university per semester to recognize the most active, supportive and united SAAC in the country. This year KU SAAC went above and beyond in each of those categories by taking part in several outreach programs such as Hawks, Cops and Kids, the Character Counts program and volunteering at several Special Olympics events. Members took part in leadership and team building retreats and participated in a variety of campus organizations such as Student Senate, President’s Roundtable and the University Events Committee. All of the activities SAAC organizes and takes part in are included in consideration for the award.

“The leadership that the student-athletes at KU have shown is a true testament to the criteria set forth for the Award of Excellence,” said Scott Krapf, chair of the NCAA SAAC. “KU’s example now sets the standard for excellence with the incredible variety of community service initiatives, growth and teamwork that their committee has implemented. It is simply outstanding.”

Committees are nominated for excelling in several categories ranging from community outreach, sportsmanship initiatives and leadership. Selection for the award is based on any single category or a combination of multiple categories. The award is a chance for student-athlete peers to commend their SAAC nationally for the success they have had on their campus.

SAAC’s responsibilities at KU are to provide student-athletes the opportunity to communicate more effectively with the University of Kansas athletic administration, coaches and staff. It enables student-athletes to provide recommendations for the improvement of academic, athletic and social experiences. It also encourages community involvement through service projects and fundraisers. In addition, SAAC offers input on the rules, regulations and policies that affect student-athletes’ lives on the University of Kansas campus.

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