Special to The Sun
ORLANDO – Recent Gator gymnastics standout Alex McMurtry accepted the 2019 NCAA Today’s Top 10 Award on Wednesday night at the NCAA Honors Celebration held at the Marriott World Center. The award recognizes student-athletes for their successes on the field, in the classroom and in the community.
The honorees are selected by the NCAA Honors Committee, composed of representatives of NCAA member schools, conferences and distinguished citizens, including past awardees. McMurtry is the seventh Gator student-athlete to receive this award.
“It is an honor to be selected as one of the recipients of the Today’s Top 10 award. To be recognized with all these athletes who have accomplished so much not only in the classroom and their respective sports, but also in the community, is very humbling,” McMurtry said. “I am proud to be representing the University of Florida and Florida gymnastics.”
There were plenty in the ballroom Wednesday to celebrate McMurtry’s latest honor. UF Athletic Director Scott Stricklin presented the NCAA Today’s Top 10 award to McMurtry. Her entire family, Florida gymnastics coach Jenny Rowland, teammates Bridgette Caquatto, Rachel Slocum and Lindsey Walker were among the McMurtry cheering section.
“Tonight was an amazing experience. So happy that I could be part of this event to honor Alex and all these other accomplished individuals. Alex was a leader and role model for her teammates in both academics and athletics throughout her Gator career,” Rowland said. “What an outstanding representative she’s been for this University, Gator athletics and the sport of gymnastics.”
Here’s a quick look at McMurtry’s accomplishments during her Florida career:
Success in Sport:
* Four-time NCAA champion (2015 team; 2017 all-around, uneven bars; 2018 vault)
* One of 10 in NCAA history to record a ‘GymSlam’ – a 10.0 in each apparatus
* Shares every Florida event record, including all-around (39.825). Shares NCAA Championships’ semifinal all-around record (39.8125) and shares NCAA Super Six uneven bars record (10.0)
* 2017 Honda Award recipient for gymnastics
* Southeastern Conference Gymnast of 2017 and 2018 SEC Event Specialist Gymnast of Year
* Six-time SEC champion (2018 vault, uneven bars; 2017 all-around, floor exercise; 2016 beam, 2015 vault) – one of three in the 38-year history of SEC gymnastics to complete a ‘SEC Slam’ (a title in each of the five events)
* 22-time All-American (14 NCAA / 8 NACGC Regular Season) and four-time All-SEC
Success in Academics:
* Graduated summa cum laude in August of 2018 in applied physiology & kinesiology- exercise physiology
* In May of 2018, became seventh Gator gymnast awarded a NCAA postgraduate scholarship and the 56th student-athlete in UF athletics
* First Gator in any sport to receive the NCAA Elite 90 Award (given to the student-athlete with the highest GPA at each of the 90 NCAA championships sites) at the 2017 NCAA Championships
* Three-time CoSIDA Academic All-American
* Four-time NACGC Scholastic Academic All-American
* 2017 & 2018 SEC Scholar-Athlete Gymnast of the Year
* 2016, 2017 & 2018 SEC Academic Honor Roll
As a member of the Gator gymnastics team, McMurtry participated in 39 Goodwill Gator activities.
McMurtry is the seventh Gator receive one of the NCAA’s top individual honors:
* Kelsey Bruder, Softball, 2011
* Tim Tebow, Football, 2009
* Stephanie Nickitas, Tennis, 1999
* Danny Wuerffel, Football, 1996
* Megan Neyer, Diving, 1986
* Tracy Caulkins, Swimming, 1985