June 11, 2007
SAN BRUNO, Calif., -- Pepperdine University's Richard Johnson and Santa Clara University's Kim McGiven were named the West Coast Conference Male and Female Scholar Athletes of the Year, Commissioner Michael Gilleran announced today. Johnson is the third consecutive Pepperdine male student-athlete to earn the conference's top honor and the first tennis player since the University of San Francisco's Rodney Lee took home the award in 1979. McGiven is the second Santa Clara female student-athlete to earn the award in the last three years and is the first volleyball player to receive the honor since Loyola Marymount University's Tracy Holman won the award in 1998.
The highest honor in the WCC is selected by a vote of the WCC's institutional representatives to recognize the finest accomplishments in athletics, academics and community service by individuals who have completed their WCC eligibility.
FEMALE SCHOLAR-ATHLETE OF THE YEAR
Kim McGiven - Santa Clara University - Volleyball - 3.92 GPA
Kim McGiven played four seasons on the Santa Clara University volleyball team, serving as a team captain in 2005 and 2006. A three-time All-WCC first team member, McGiven played a crucial role in leading the Broncos to the program's and the WCC's first-ever Final Four in 2005, earning Co-MVP honors at the Palo Alto Regional. McGiven ends her career as one of the all-time greats in Santa Clara volleyball history, ranking fifth on the Bronco's all-time kills list (1,327) and fourth in career kills per game average (3.46).
While at Santa Clara, McGiven epitomized the term student-athlete, serving on the Student Athlete Advisory Committee for four years. As impressive as McGiven was on the court, she was equally impressive in the classroom, graduating with a 3.92 with a double major in Finance and Religious Studies. For her athletic and academic excellence, McGiven was a three-time member of the WCC All-Academic team. In addition to her athletic and academic commitments, McGiven was also active in campus and community activities, volunteering throughout her career at the Julian Street Inn, a shelter for the homeless, while also serving as a volunteer at the Through Young Life Camp. McGiven was also involved in the Big Brother/Big Sister program and has also spoken at numerous Santa Clara University events.
MALE SCHOLAR-ATHLETE OF THE YEAR
Richard Johnson - Pepperdine University - Tennis - 3.74 GPA
Richard Johnson was an integral part of Pepperdine University's national rise of prominence of its men's tennis program. The three-time All-WCC honoree was a key player on the Waves' 2006 National Championship team, earning NCAA Championship All-Tournament doubles team honors with partner Omar Altmann. Johnson also helped the Waves to four consecutive WCC Championships. During his time in Malibu, the Waves tallied a 102-22 overall record and advanced to four NCAA Championships.
Johnson, who graduated with a 3.74 GPA in Biology, was named to the WCC All-Academic team twice and is a three time member of the WCC Commissioner's Honor Roll. Johnson, a four-time member of the Dean's List, helped the Waves earn the ITA National Team Sportsmanship Award in 2004. He was named as a Pepperdine Scholar-Athlete in all four years of his collegiate career, and will graduate magna cum laude in December of 2007. Despite the time demands put on him by academics and athletics, Johnson found time to volunteer as a tutor at the local elementary school in his hometown. Johnson also served as a volunteer tennis instructor, teaching tennis to underprivileged children in his hometown. He also participated in the Boy's and Girl's Club charity pro-am, helping to raise over $300,000 for the Boy's and Girl's Club of America of Conejo Valley, CA.