June 20, 2007
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The list of high-profile accolades continues to grow for Tennessee pitcher Monica Abbott as the Salinas, Calif., native was chosen as the 2006-07 Roy F. Kramer Southeastern Conference Female Athlete of the Year according to a Wednesday announcement by SEC Commissioner Mike Slive. The prestigious honor was bestowed on UT's 6-3 lefthander through a vote of the league's athletics directors. Vanderbilt All-American pitcher David Price garnered the men's award.
Abbott is the Big Orange's first female winner since Lady Vol basketball player Chamique Holdsclaw was honored for the second consecutive season in 1999. She is also Tennessee's first non-basketball women's athlete to receive the SEC Female Athlete of the Year trophy.
The other nominees included: Terin Humphrey, Alabama (gymnastics); Stacy Lewis, Arkansas (golf); Kerron Stewart, Auburn (track & field); Angie McGinnis, Florida (volleyball); Courtney Kupets, Georgia (gymnastics); Brooke Marnitz, Kentucky (softball); Megan Falcon, LSU (tennis); Armintie Price, Ole Miss (basketball); Chelsea Bramlett, Mississippi State (softball); Natasha Hastings, South Carolina (track & field); and Jacqui Concolino, Vanderbilt (golf).
The SEC Athletes of the Year awards were first presented in 1976 for men and 1984 for women. The honor was renamed the Roy F. Kramer Athletes of the Year in 2004 to honor the former commissioner who served the conference from 1990-2002.
The 2007 USA Softball Player of the Year and winner of the prestigious Honda Award for Softball, Abbott registered a NCAA Division I-best 50-5 record with a 0.68 ERA and 29 shutouts to go along with a NCAA single-season record 724 strikeouts during her senior campaign. She is the Lady Vols' initial four-time National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) First-Team Softball All-American, as well as being a three-time Southeastern Conference Pitcher of the Year winner, a four-time All-SEC pick and a three-time Women's College World Series All-Tournament selection.
She also set new NCAA Division I career records for wins (189), strikeouts (2,440), shutouts (112), appearances (253) and innings pitched (1448.0). A 16-time SEC Pitcher of the Week, four-time USA Softball National Player of the Week and three-time NFCA National Player of the Week, Abbott recorded 23 career no-hitters and six perfect games.
Past recipients of the SEC Athlete of the Year Award include: 2006 - Xavier Carter, LSU (track & field) and Seimone Augustus, LSU (basketball); 2005 - Ryan Lochte, Florida (swimming) and Kirsty Coventry, Auburn (swimming); 2004 - Alistair Cragg, Arkansas (cross country/track) and Jeana Rice, Alabama (gymnastics); 2003 - Alistair Cragg, Arkansas (cross country/track) and LaToya Thomas, Mississippi State (basketball); 2002 - Walter Lewis, LSU (track & field) and Andree' Pickens, Alabama (gymnastics); 2001 - Matias Boeker, Georgia (tennis) and Amy Yoder Begley, Arkansas (cross country/track); 2000 - Kip Bouknight , South Carolina (baseball) and Kristy Kowal, Georgia (swimming); 1999 - Tim Couch, Kentucky (football) and Chamique Holdsclaw, Tennessee (basketball); 1998 - Peyton Manning, Tennessee (football) and Chamique Holdsclaw, Tennessee (basketball); 1997 - Danny Wuerffel, Florida (football) and Trinity Johnson, South Carolina (softball); 1996 - Danny Wuerffel, Florida (football) and Saudia Roundtree, Georgia (basketball); 1995 - Todd Helton, Tennessee (baseball) and Jenny Hansen, Kentucky (gymnastics); 1994 - Corliss Williamson, Arkansas (basketball) and Nicole Haislett, Florida (swimming); 1993 - Jamal Mashburn, Kentucky (basketball) and Nicole Haislett, Florida (swimming); 1992 - Shaquille O'Neal, LSU (basketball) and Vicki Goetze, Georgia (golf); 1991 - Shaquille O'Neal, LSU (basketball) and Daedra Charles, Tennessee (basketball); 1990 - Alec Kessler, Georgia (basketball) and Dee Foster, Alabama (gymnastics); 1989 - Derrick Thomas, Alabama (football) and Bridgette Gordon, Tennessee (basketball); 1988 - Will Perdue, Vanderbilt (basketball) and Dara Torres, Florida (swimming); 1987 - Cornelius Bennett, Alabama (football) and Lillie Leatherwood-King, Alabama (track and field); 1986 - Bo Jackson, Auburn (football) and Jennifer Gillom, Ole Miss (basketball); 1985 - Will Clark, Mississippi State (baseball) and Penney Hauschild, Alabama (gymnastics); 1984 - Terry Hoage, Georgia (football) and Tracy Caulkins, Florida (swimming); 1983 - Herschel Walker, Georgia (football/track and field); 1982 - Buck Belue, Georgia (football/baseball); 1981 - Rowdy Gaines, Auburn (swimming); 1980 - Kyle Macy, Kentucky (basketball); 1979 - Reggie King, Alabama (basketball); 1978 - Jack Givens, Kentucky (basketball); 1977 - Larry Seivers, Tennessee (football); and 1976 - Harvey Glance, Auburn (track and field).