July 15, 2010
IRVING, Texas - Conference USA announced its annual Scholar Athlete Award winners on Thursday and Rice University led the league with five student-athletes being recognized. The awards honor the top student-athlete in each Conference USA sport and are determined by the league's Faculty Athletics Representatives.
Rice University recipients for the 2009-10 academic year were Philip Adam (Men's Track and Field), Michael Buttacavoli (Men's Golf), Lucas Kuipers (Men's Basketball), Tracey Lam (Volleyball) and Angela Wo (Swimming).
Behind Rice University's five recipients, Tulsa and UAB each had four selections and Tulane had two selections. East Carolina, Memphis and UTEP each had one student-athlete recognized.
Adam was named to the 2009-10 ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America® Men's Track and Field and Cross Country first team, as chosen by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). Adam was also a member of the 2008-09 team and is the first C-USA track athlete to be named to two Academic All All-America first teams.
Adam was also an All-American on the track this year, finishing ninth in the decathlon at the NCAA Outdoor Championships in Eugene, Ore. An Economics major with a minor in Business who carried a 3.95 grade point average, Adam is a two-time Conference USA outdoor champion in the decathlon. The junior has been named the C-USA Scholar Athlete of the Year three times.
Buttacavoli was named to the 2009-10 ESPN The Magazine All-America® At-Large third team. The Economics major posted a 3.94 grade point average during his career. He was a unanimous selection to the 2010 Conference USA Men's Golf All-Academic Team and was twice named a Cleveland Golf/Srixon All-America Scholar by the Golf Coaches Association of America.
As a senior, Buttacavoli led Rice with seven, Top 10 finishes. He had a 74.07 strokes per round average. He helped the Owls to a runner-up finish at the Conference USA Golf Championship and a return to NCAA post-season play after a 13-year absence. Buttacavoli was an All-Conference USA Second-Team selection.
Kuipers is a two-time Conference USA Commissioners Honor Roll selectee.
Last year as a sophomore, Kuipers played in all 31 games, starting 16. For the year he averaged 8.0 points and 3.4 rebounds. He is the second Rice basketball player in as many years to be named a C-USA Scholar Athlete.
A lßbero for the Owls' NCAA volleyball team, Lam was named to the Conference USA All-Academic Team for a second straight year in 2009 and was named to the 2009 ESPN The Magazine All-District VI Team for a second time as well. Earlier this year, she received the Joyce Pounds Hardy Award which is presented annually to Rice University's top overall female student-athlete for her efforts in athletics, in the classroom and in the community. Lam carries a 3.73 GPA and is a junior majoring in Economics and Asian Studies.
During the 2009 season, she set school records for digs in a season with 633 and her 5.50 digs per set average ranked ninth-best in the nation. She was named the C-USA Lßbero of the Year, first-team All-CUSA, AVCA All-Midwest Region and AVCA Honorable Mention All-America. She was also named to the C-USA Championship All-Tournament Team.
Wo concluded her career as a three-time Conference USA All-Academic Team selection. She received the C-USA Commissioner's Academic Medal all four years during her career. Additionally, Wo was a recipient of the 2008-09 Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholars Award.
Wo carried a 3.84 grade point average in Kinesiology and was Rice's top swimmer in the 100-backstroke and 100-butterfly as a senior.