Danielle McCray And Cole Aldrich Named All-American Athletes By NSCA
April 15, 2009
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. –
Kansas women’s basketball player Danielle McCray and men’s basketball player Cole Aldrich were both honored Wednesday by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) with its annual All-American Strength and Conditioning Athlete of the Year Award–recognizing the student athlete’s dedication to strength training and conditioning.
This year, the NSCA awarded 207 collegiate athletes from 116 schools with this esteemed award. McCray and Aldrich were both selected by Kansas Assistant Athletics Director for Strength Performance Andrea Hudy for the awards.
McCray, who led the Jayhawks to a 22-14 overall record and an appearance in the 2009 WNIT Championship game, ranked eighth in the NCAA in scoring this season with 21.6 points per game, while also finishing the season ranked in the top 10 of the Big 12 Conference in nine statistical categories. McCray, who was named All-Big 12 First Team and a State Farm All-America Finalist, completed her junior season averaging 21.6 points, 7.8 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 1.3 steals and 1.0 blocks per game.
“Danielle is naturally a strong person and like many gifted athletes, she responds more favorably to training than most,” said Hudy, who is in her fifth season with Kansas Athletics. “Unlike many talented athletes who use their abilities as a means to coast rather than develop them, Danielle has chosen to take advantage of the opportunites that training provides and has enjoyed significant improvements in her strength, but more notably her work capacity and endurance.”
Aldrich, who helped guide the Jayhawks to an appearance in the 2009 NCAA Championship “Sweet 16,” concluded the season averaging 14.9 points, 11.1 rebounds and 2.7 blocks per game, making him one of the most improved players in the NCAA. He collected All-Big 12 First Team honors and was named co-Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year for his efforts. Aldrich recorded the first official triple-double in Kansas history with 13 points, 20 rebounds and 10 blocked shots against Dayton in the second round of the 2009 NCAA Championship.
“Cole’s work ethic would be definitely cosidered “blue collar” by anyone’s standards,” said Hudy, who has worked with nine NCAA Championship teams in her career. “He has used training to dramatically improve his body composition, as well as, his coordination and athleticism. His strength gains have helped him to become a dominant force in the paint.”
The NSCA All-American Athlete of the Year Award program is in its 30th year, and is made possible by a grant from Power Systems, Inc., a Knoxville, Tenn., fitness product leader. A completed list of 2009 All-American Strength and Conditioning Athletes can be found by visiting the NSCA website at www.nsca-lift.org.