June 9, 2010
MADISON, Wis. -- A pair of Wisconsin track and field athletes were honored Wednesday for their excellence in athletics and academics, as the Big Ten Conference presented its 2010 Medal of Honor to seniors Jack Bolas and Chavon Robinson.
The award is presented annually at each Big Ten institution to a male and female student-athlete in the graduating class who has demonstrated proficiency in scholarship and athletics.
Bolas and Robinson join a distinguished list of past UW Medal of Honor winners that includes, among others, Joe Thomas (2007), Sarah Bauer (2007), Jim Leonhard (2005), Kirk Penney (2003), Mike Eaves (1978) and Pat Richter (1963).
Bolas, of Chapel Hill, N.C., is a three-time All-American on the track as a middle distance runner and looks to add to that total as the No. 2 seed in the 1,500 meters at this week’s 2010 NCAA Outdoor Championships.
He has finished third a total of three times in NCAA championships competition to go along with three career Big Ten titles. Most recently, Bolas claimed the 1,500 meters title at the 2010 Big Ten Outdoor Championships in May.
He also was part of Wisconsin’s first-ever NCAA team title at the 2007 NCAA Indoor Championships and won four Big Ten team titles with the Badgers in cross country.
The first Wisconsin runner to break the 4-minute barrier in the indoor mile, Bolas also has shown his proficiency for academic achievement during his four years at Wisconsin. A 2009 ESPN The Magazine Academic All-American who is up for the honor again this season, Bolas completed a degree in zoology with a 3.67 grade-point average last month.
He is a six-time Academic All-Big Ten selection, having earned the conference’s academic honor three times each in cross country and track. In addition, Bolas was named to the league’s inaugural Big Ten Distinguished Scholar list in 2009, and he is a two-time All-Academic selection by the U.S Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association.
Robinson, a native of Milwaukee, Wis., exemplified what it means to be a student-athlete during her five years as a Badger. In the same season in which she capped her athletic career with All-America honors, Robinson concluded her academic career by completing her degree human development and family studies with a 3.42 GPA.
She recently earned ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District honors for the first time, while also picking up the fourth Academic All-Big Ten citation of her career, and she is a two-time All-Academic selection by the USTFCCCA.
Robinson was named the 2009-10 UW Women’s Student-Athlete of the Year for her combination of achievement in athletics and academics, as well as her impressive undertaking of numerous community service projects.
Among Robinson’s most visible and successful projects was the Sport the Vote campaign, which she organized and administered to register student-athletes for the 2008 national elections.
Robinson earned All-America honors in her first-ever trip to the NCAA championships in March, claiming a 12th-place finish in the triple jump. That performance came on the heels of her first-ever Big Ten title, which she claimed by winning the triple jump at the conference meet.
In addition to her championship performance, Robinson also finished runner-up in Big Ten championships competition a total of four times. She concluded her career as the Badgers’ school record-holder in both the indoor and outdoor triple jump.
Robinson plans to pursue a graduate degree beginning in the fall of 2010.
WISCONSIN’S BIG TEN MEDAL OF HONOR RECIPIENTS
In 1914, the Conference endowed a Medal of Honor, to be awarded annually at each institution, to a student in the graduating class that has demonstrated proficiency in scholarship and athletics. Winners in 1964 were 50th Anniversary winners of the Medal of Honor. Beginning in 1982, a senior woman athlete from each institution has also been awarded the Conference Medal of Honor.
1915 - Martin Thomas Kennedy, Rowing
1916 - William Dow Harvey, Track and Field
1917 - Mead Burke, Track and Field
1918 - Ebert Edward Simpson, Jr.
1919 - Charles H. Carpenter, Football
1920 - Anthony G. Zulfer; Baseball, Basketball
1921 - Allan C. Davey, Football
1922 - George Bunge, Football
1923 - Gustave K. Tebell; Baseball, Basketball, Football
1924 - Harold J. Bentson, Rowing
1925 - Lloyd Vallely; Cross Country, Track
1926 - Stephen H. Polaski, Football
1927 - Jefferson DeMent Burrus, Rowing
1928 - Louis Behr, Basketball
1929 - Theodore A. Thelander; Baseball, Basketball, Football
1930 - Donald W. Meikeljohn, Tennis
1931 - Louis E. Oberdeck, Rowing
1932 - Harvey H. Schneider
1933 - Nello Anthony Pacetti; Football
1934 - Robert A. Schiller, Wrestling
1935 - Rolf Falk Poser; Basketball
1936 - Howard Thurston Heun, Rowing
1937 - Leonard L. Lovshin, Football
1938 - Charles H. Fensk, Cross Country, Track
1939 - Walter I. Bietila, Baseball
1940 - Ralph H. Moeller, Football
1941 - Kenneth E. Bixby, Baseball
1942 - Burleigh E. Jacobs
1943 - Frederick R. Rehm
1944 - Edward M. Dzirbik, Wrestling
1945 - Ken Chandler, Track
1946 - Jerry Thompson, Football
1947 - Exner Menzel, Basketball
1948 - Carlyle Fay, Jr., Rowing
1949 - Donald R. Peterson, Rowing
1950 - Robert J. Wilson, Football
1951 - David Staiger; Track, Football
1952 - Walter E. Deike; Cross Country, Track
1953 - James T. Moran; Football, Rowing
1954 - Norbert J. Esser; Basketball, Football, Track
1955 - Richard W. Cable, Basketball
1956 - Robert E. Konovsky; Football, Wrestling
1957 - Patrick J. Levenhagen, Football
1958 - Walter V. Holt, Baseball
1959 - John R. Hobbs; Basketball, Football, Track
1960 - Dale L. Hackbart, Football
1961 - Gerald L. Kulcinski, Football
1962 - Thomas M. Hughbanks; Baseball, Basketball, Football, Track
1963 - Hugh V. (Pat) Richter; Baseball, Basketball, Football
1964 - William R. Smith, Track and Field
1965 - Gary V. Kirk, Tennis
1966 - David N. Fronek, Football
1967 - Dennis J. Sweeney, Baseball
1968 - Michael Gluck, Wrestling
1969 - Karl Rudat, Football
1970 - Douglas R. McFadyen, Hockey
1971 - Don Vandrey, Track and Field
1972 - Pat Matzdorf; Track and Field
1973 - Keith D. Nosbusch, Football
1974 - Gary D. Anderson
1975 - James R. Dyreby, Jr., Rowing
1976 - Patrick J. Christenso, Wrestling
1977 - Peter W. Brey, Basketball
1978 - Michael Eaves, Hockey
1979 - Steve Lacy; Cross Country, Track
1980 - Thoams G. Stauss, Football
1981 - David C. Goodspeed, Wrestling
1982 - David Mohapp, Football and Ann French, Badminton
1983 - David Farley and Rose Thomson; Cross Country, Track
1984 - John Johannson, Hockey and Janet Huff, Basketball
1985 - John Easker; Cross Country, Track and Cathy Branta; Cross Country, Track
1986 - Tim Hacker; Cross Country, Track and Lisa Fortman, Tennis
1987 - J. J. Weber; Basketball and Amy Justeson, Swimming
1988 - Paul Gruber, Football and Chris Gilles, Tennis
1989 - Dave Lee, Wrestling and Maureen Hartzheim; Cross Country, Track
1990 - John Byce, Hockey and Susan Temple, Volleyball
1991 - Jack Waite, Tennis and Elaine Demetroulis, Tennis
1992 - Matt Demaray, Wrestling and Heather Taggart, Soccer
1993 - Donovan Bergstrom, Track and Kim Sherman; Cross Country, Track
1994 - Louis Hinshaw, Track and Field and Susie Holt; Soccer
1995 - Jeff Gold, Soccer and Dana Tzakis, Golf
1996 - Scott Lamphear, Soccer and Lauren Gavaris, Tennis
1997 - Alastair Steel, Soccer and Kathy Butler; Cross Country, Track
1998 - Erik Raygor; Hockey and Katie Voigt; Basketball
1999 - Brian Doherty, Soccer and Shannon Brown, Soccer
2000 - Jay Schoenfelder; Cross Country, Track and Gina Panighetti, Swimming
2001 - Mike Kelley, Basketball and Allie Blomquist, Golf
2002 - Danny Westerman, Tennis and Andrea Wanezek, Swimming
2003 - Kirk Penney, Basketball and Erin Byrd, Volleyball
2004 - Ryan Tremelling, Track and Morgan Shields, Volleyball
2005 - Jim Leonhard, Football and Carla MacLeod, Ice Hockey
2006 - Nathan Brown, Track and Field and Jessica Ring, Ice Hockey
2007 - Joe Thomas, Football and Sara Bauer, Ice Hockey
2008 - Adam Barhamand, Rowing and Katrina Rundhaug, Track and Cross Country
2009 - Joe Krabbenhoft, Basketball and Gwen Jorgensen, Cross Country, Track
2010 - Jack Bolas, Cross Country, Track and Chavon Robinson, Track