Athletics News

Three Irish Student-Athletes Receive BIG EAST Scholar-Athlete Sport Excellence Awards

June 16, 2010

NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Notre Dame men's basketball player Tim Abromaitis (Unionville, Conn.), rower Sarah Keithley (Austin, Texas) and men's tennis player Tyler Davis (Nashville, Tenn.) were among the 24 winners of the 2009-10 BIG EAST Scholar-Athlete Sport Excellence Awards. Notre Dame, Connecticut and Louisville each had three recipients amongst the 16 conference institutions.

The Scholar-Athlete Sport Excellence Awards are given annually to one student-athlete in each BIG EAST sport based on academic credentials, athletic accolades and performances and volunteer service in the community. Student-athletes who attained junior academic standing and a minimum cumulative grade-point average of 3.00 are eligible. The BIG EAST Faculty Athletics Representative Council selects the award winners

Abromaitis, who also won the men's basketball BIG EAST Scholar-Athlete of the Year award, was one of five Sport Excellence Award winners to have also been named an ESPN The Magazine/CoSIDA Academic All-American during the past school year. The junior averaged 18.2 points and 5.7 rebounds during the '09-'10 campaign, earning BIG EAST Honorable Mention honors and helping the Irish to the NCAA Tournament.

Abromaitis put together an impressive resume of honors off the hardwood. Posting a 3.73 grade-point average as a finance major, the two-time BIG EAST All-Academic Team member has made the dean's list on three occasions. He graduated a year early from the Mendoza College of Business with a degree in finance and is currently enrolled in an intensified one-year MBA program at the University. The junior also participated in the Rosenthal Leadership Academy and helped organize efforts for Mike Brey's annual BasketBall to benefit Coaches vs. Cancer and was on the student-athlete planning committee for the women's basketball team's breast cancer awareness game.

Sarah Keithley


Keithley, a fifth-year senior, coxed a BIG EAST champion boat in three of the four seasons she participated, while helping the Irish to four team titles. She was the coxswain for the varsity eight champion in 2010, while coxing the varsity four to gold in 2006 and 2008. She also led the varsity eight to a second place finish at the BIG EAST Championships in 2007. In addition, she was a coxswain on boats for both of Notre Dame's NCAA Tournament appearances (2006 and 2007). She redshirted the 2009 season with the knowledge she would be returning for a fifth year in 2010 while working on a dual degree in civil engineering and theology.

Keithley posted 3.74 grade-point average and twice was named to the Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association (CRCA) National Scholar Athlete team. She is a four-time member of the BIG EAST All-Academic Team and made the dean's list seven of her ten semesters as an undergraduate. She received several academic awards, including the Riley Scholar Award, given annually to a fifth year senior in a dual degree program, and the Gertrude Austin Marti Award, given to a graduating theology senior. Outside the classroom, Keithley served as a student leader for the Notre Dame Fellowship of Christian Athletes and was a member of the Rosenthal Leadership Academy. She also served as a mentor at Clay Intermediate School in South Bend and participated in the Fighting Irish Fighting for Life program, which matches Notre Dame teams with local teenagers undergoing cancer treatment.

Keithley is the third Notre Dame rower to receive a BIG EAST Scholar-Athlete Sport Excellence Award.

Tyler Davis


Davis spent most of the season anchoring the number two doubles team for the Irish, posting an 8-8 mark. He also went 4-1 at singles on the campaign. He has a career record of 38-28 in dual season doubles matches, along with a 12-9 career singles mark and helped the Irish to the 2008 BIG EAST title.

Off the court, Davis is majoring in science business and is a three-time member of the BIG EAST All-Academic Team. The junior was a driving force behind his team's participation of Fighting Irish Fighting for Life, while also volunteering at the Early Childhood Development Center on Notre Dame's campus. He was actively involved in Student-Athlete Advisory Council activities, including a Christmas party for pediatric patients and raising funds for relief efforts in Haiti.

While Abromaitis and Davis will both return to try and lead their respective programs to the NCAA Tournament as seniors, Keithley will begin doctoral studies in civil engineering at the University of Texas.

For the complete 2009-10 BIG EAST Scholar-Athlete Sport Excellence Awards, visit the BIG EAST web site.

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