While he awaits an NCAA decision on whether or not he will get a sixth year in South Bend, Notre Dame forward Tim Abromaitis adds another incredible accomplishment to his already stellar resume. On Tuesday evening, Abromaitis was named the American Eagle Outfitters BIG EAST Men's Basketball Scholar-Athlete of The Year for an unprecedented third-straight season.
Last season, Abromaitis joined Arturas Karnishovas of Seton Hall (1993-94) and Emeka Okafor of Connecticut (2003-04) as just the third two-time winner. Today, he becomes the only three-time recipient since the award was first given in 1985. In 2010, he became the second Notre Dame player to receive the honor, joining forward Pat Garrity who earned the recognition in 1998.
As head coach Mike Brey said in an interview with UND.com, "I'm so proud of Tim. This will never happen again...He truly is a student-athlete. He's the poster boy for student-athletes."
Unfortunately for the Irish, Abromaitis suffered a season-ending knee injury in late November, and only appeared in two games during the 2011-12 campaign. Last year, he averaged 15.4 points per game and helped guide the Irish to a 27-7 record and #2 seed in the NCAA tournament.
The Unionville, Ct. native completed his undergraduate degree in just three years, graduating in May 2010, before enrolling in the accelerated one-year MBA program. When it comes to his future with the Fighting Irish, Abromaitis's string of academic excellence may actually hurt his chances for a sixth year.
When the NCAA make its final ruling, they will probably be asking the same question many of us are wondering, "Tim, what else can you accomplish academically?" Of course, there's always the opportunity to start a Ph.D. or J.D. program.
Only time will tell if Abromaitis gets another year with the blue & gold, but regardless of what happens, he has been an excellent representative of the university and will be successful, whether or not he continues playing basketball at the collegiate or professional level.
- Josh Flynt ('11)