Gunn and Uudmae Named to Academic All-District
BY ANDRES FOCIL
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. – On Friday the Arkansas track and field team loaded up on various honors as the top-ranked Razorbacks continue to prepare for the NCAA Outdoor Championships on June 8-11 in Sacramento, Calif.
Senior triple jumper Jaanus Uudmae and junior distance runner Matt Gunn were selected to the College Sports Information Directors of America’s (CoSIDA) Academic All-District First-Team and UA head coach John McDonnell was named as the NCAA’s Mideast Region Coach of the Year by the United States Track Coaches Association (USTCA).
As a computer science major, Uudmae is one of four track athletes in the nation to boast a 4.0 cumulative GPA. The Tallinn, Estonia native is a member of the All-Southeastern Conference Academic Honor Roll and UA’s Lon Farrell Academic Honor Roll.
He is a two-time All-American and seven-time All-SEC performer. This year Uudmae dominated the league in the triple jump after he captured both the indoor and outdoor titles in the event, making him the first UA athlete since two-time Olympian Robert Howard in 1997 to win both championships in the same year.
Gunn, a native of Idaho Falls, Idaho, has had a banner year. In April he earned the NCAA’s highest honor when he was selected as a Walter Byers Postgraduate Scholarship recipient. He graduated this spring with an international relations and European studies double major, while maintaining a 3.83 cumulative GPA. He will continue his education at Columbia Law School and was one of 8,500 applicants to the highly competitive program that only accepts 360 students.
Gunn transferred to Arkansas from Clemson as a walk-on in 2002 and went on to become a three-time All-SEC distance runner and competed as UA’s fifth man at the 2003 and 2004 NCAA Cross Country Championships.
The regional coaching honor has been awarded for the past three years, ever since the new format of competition was instituted in 2003 and McDonnell is the only coach to earn the distinction. He continued his winning ways in 2005 after he guided the Razorbacks to victory at the SEC Outdoor Championships. It was their 12th SEC outdoor title in 14 years and an unprecedented overall 76th league crown.
McDonnell sent a record 26 athletes to compete at the NCAA Mideast Regional Championships in Bloomington, Ind., where they took home the team title with 94.5 points, over second-place Auburn’s 58. For the weekend Arkansas qualified 16 athletes, including the 4×100-meter relay to the national championships. Additionally, four meet titles were picked up by Hog athletes and the winning 4×100-meter relay team broke a 20-year school record.
2005 CoSIDA ACADEMIC ALL-DISTRICT VI
MEN’S TRACK & FIELD TEAM (UNIVERSITY)
(There are 11 members because of a tie in the voting)
Name School Yr. GPA Major
TODD BOURGEOIS McNeese State Sr. 3.945 H&HP
AARON CASTRO Texas-Pan American Jr. 3.975 Business
JASON COLEMAN Univ. of Oklahoma So. 3.79 Architecture
ADAM DAVIS Rice Sr. 3.96 Economics
MATT DENTON Mississippi State Sr. 3.82 Business Information Systems
MATT GUNN Univ. of Arkansas Jr. 3.83 Int. Relations/European Studies
MARCEL HEWAMUDALIGE Rice Sr. 3.38 Economics, Political Science
ALDWYN SAPPLETON Univ. of Oklahoma Grad. 3.33 MBA
JAANUS UUDMAE Univ. of Arkansas Sr. 4.0 Computer Science
RON VEILLON Houston Sr. 3.60 Computer Engineering Tech
WILLIE YUEN Univ. of New Mexico Sr. 3.70 Biochemistry
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