April 11, 2014
NOTRE DAME, Ind. --- Junior Chris Giesting has been recognized as the 2014 Atlantic Coast Conference Men’s Indoor Track & Field Scholar-Athlete of the Year and heads up the sport’s All-ACC Academic Team, as announced today by ACC Commissioner John Swofford.
A sprinter majoring in management entrepreneurship, Giesting made a huge impression during the Fighting Irish’s first year of ACC competition. The Batesville, Ind., native was named the Most Valuable Men’s Track Performer of the 2014 ACC Indoor Championships on March 1 after piling up 18 points and earning dual All-ACC honors with a first-place finish in the 400-meter dash and a second-place showing in the 200 meters.
“If you would look up ‘scholar-athlete’ in the dictionary, you would see a picture of Chris,” says sprints coach Alan Turner. “He’s just one of those kids that does everything right. You tell him something one time, and it’s done. He’s a pleasure to work with. If our team were full of Chris Giestings, we would be national champs easy, every year. I’m very fortunate to have someone as talented as he is on the track, but also in the classroom, and on top of that, he’s a good person. He has a kind heart. But on the track, he’s tough. He’s a tough competitor.”
After the Indoor ACCs, Giesting went on to earn All-America honors during the NCAA Championships on March 14-15, placing fifth in the 400 meters and helping the Notre Dame 4x400 relay team to an eighth-place finish. Prior to his strong postseason showings, Giesting’s regular-season efforts included a first-place time of 45.89 in Alex Wilson Invitational that set a Notre Dame school record and qualified for both the ACC and NCAA Championships.
With his recognition as the ACC Scholar-Athlete and All-ACC Academic Team selections, Giesting has earned academic honors in two conferences, having also been named a BIG EAST Academic All-Star.
“Balancing academics and athletics is a tough task, especially at Notre Dame where you're expected to excel at both,” Giesting explains. “It's always hard to keep up with school work when we have such a demanding travel schedule. I try to plan ahead as much as possible and make sure I have my work done in preparation for a big travel weekend, knowing I'll be missing classes. Doing work on the road is never easy, but sometimes you just have to put in the effort if you want to do well. It's all about time management.”
For the past two years, Giesting has also been enrolled in the Rosenthal Leadership Academy, a program through Student Welfare and Development. The Academy’s mission is to provide emerging and existing leaders with progressive annual programming. Student-athletes are nominated by peers and selected by coaches for enrollment in the Academy.
Notre Dame leads the 2014 All-ACC Academic Men’s Indoor Track and Field Team with 11 selections. The accomplishment is made all the more special by the fact that this is Notre Dame’s first year competing in the conference.
“We've had a very successful year thus far as a team,” Giesting adds. “Many school records have fallen just this year, so that tells you we've got some athletes here that are the best in the history of the school. The ACC is certainly a step up for the team competition but we've risen to the challenge. I think teams are certainly aware of our presence already and know we are a team to watch out for come championship time.”
Notre Dame is competing this weekend in Louisville, Ky., at the Border Battle, but the teams also have their eyes on the ACC Outdoor Championships next weekend.
--Lauren Chval, Media Relations Assistant