Feb. 22, 2011
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – Irish standout Tim Abromaitis (Unionville, Conn.) has been named to the Capital One Academic All-America Men’s Basketball First Team for the second consecutive year. Abromaitis becomes the first Notre Dame men’s basketball player to earn first team Academic All-America honors in back-to-back seasons since Pat Garrity in 1997 and 1998.
To be eligible, a student-athlete must be a varsity starter or key reserve, maintain a cumulative grade point average of 3.30 on a scale of 4.00, have reached sophomore athletic and academic standings at his/her current institution and be nominated by his/her sports information director.
Currently, Abromaitis is enrolled in a one-year intensified MBA program within the Mendoza College of Business and has a 3.615 grade point average. He graduated one full year ahead of his class in May of 2010 from the Mendoza College of Business with a degree in finance. A three-time member of the Dean’s List, he earned a 3.72 grade index over his eight semesters.
Joining Abromaitis on the five-man first team were Devon Beitzel of Northern Colorado, Matt Howard of Butler, Tyrell Reed of Kansas and Tyler Zeller of North Carolina. In addition to earning first-team honors, Howard was selected as the men’s basketball Academic All-American of the Year.
The five-member second team was comprised of Nathan Hedgecock (United States Military Academy), Blake Hoffarber (Minnesota), Levi Knutson (Colorado), Garrett Leffelman (Brown) and Jalin Thomas (Central Michigan).
The third-team members included Riley Bencock (Mississippi State), Will Creekmore (Missouri State), Scott Saunders (Belmont), Drew Spradin (Elon) and Chris Wroblewski (Cornell).
Abromaitis becomes just the fourth player in program history to earn first team Academic All-America honors on multiple occasions. In addition to Garrity, Bob Arnzen and John Paxson were both multi-year first-team honorees. Arnzen ranks as Notre Dame’s only three-time Academic All-America honoree as he garnered first-team recognition in 1967, 1968 and 1969, while Paxson earned first-team recognition in both 1982 and 1983.
Notre Dame’s other men’s basketball Academic All-America honorees include: Gary Novak (second team in 1972 and first team in 1974); Kelly Tripucka (first team in 1979); Rich Branning (first team in 1980) and Chris Quinn (first team in 2006).
In all, Notre Dame has had eight different players in the 106-year history of the men’s basketball program garner Academic All-America recognition on 14 occasions.
Abromaitis is the third Notre Dame student-athlete during the 2010-11 school year to be named an Academic All-American. Irish kicker David Ruffer was a first-team football selection, while All-American Lauren Fowlkes earned a spot on the women’s soccer first team. Overall, Notre Dame ranks second all-time in the number of Academic All-Americans it has produced with 219.
Currently, Abromaitis is averaging 14.1 points as Notre Dame’s second-leading scorer, and a career-best 6.3 rebounds. Last season, he averaged 16.1 points and 4.7 rebounds. He is 50 points shy of becoming the 51st player in Notre Dame history to score 1,000 career points. Abromaitis has played in 73 career outings in an Irish uniform and been in the starting lineup on 52 occasions. He has scored in double figures in 49 career outings, and in 17 of those contests, has registered 20-plus points. Abromaitis has scored 30 or more points on two occasions, grabbed 10-plus rebounds four times and recorded three career doubles.
This season, he was named MVP in November at the 2010 Old Spice Classic as Notre Dame claimed the team title with wins over Georgia, California and Wisconsin. Abromaitis’ Irish are currently ranked ninth in both the Associated Press and ESPN/USA Today rankings with a 21-5 record overall and 10-4 mark in BIG EAST play, good for second place in the regular-season standings. He also has been named to the BIG EAST’s Weekly Honor Roll on two occasions this season.
In addition to being named a first team Academic All-America selection in 2010, Abromaitis was named the ’10 BIG EAST Men’s Basketball Scholar Athlete of the Year and was the recipient of the BIG EAST Scholar-Athlete Sport Excellence Award for men’s basketball. He also earned a spot on the league honorable mention team.