Bradford is Big 12 Athlete of the Year

Athletics Communications
By Athletics Communications
University of Oklahoma

July 31, 2009

NORMAN, Okla. - Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford has been named the Big 12 Conference's Male Athlete of the Year for the 2008-09 school year. The league office made the announcement Friday.

Nominees are submitted by each Big 12 institution and selected by a media panel based on 2008-09 athletic performance, academic achievement and citizenship. A new element was added to the selection process this year in which fans were able to cast their votes at Fan voting was included in the final tally for selecting the awards.

Bradford won the 2008 Heisman Trophy as a redshirt sophomore quarterback on the Oklahoma football team. He also captured the Davey O'Brien, Sammy Baugh and Chick Harley awards. The Consensus All-America was the Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year and named to the All-Big 12 First Team while leading the Sooners to the Big 12 Championship and BCS National Championship Game. Bradford was ranked No. 1 nationally with 50 touchdown passes and a 180.84 passing efficiency. He set the NCAA record for touchdown passes thrown as a sophomore and freshman with 86. Last season he was 328-of-483 passing for a 67.9 percent completion rate with only eight interceptions. Bradford declined the opportunity to declare for the NFL draft, opting to return to school for his junior athletic season.

The finance major was a 2008 CoSIDA Academic All-American and named Academic All-Big 12 in 2007 and 2008. A native of Oklahoma City, Bradford was the 2009 March of Dimes Oklahoma Headliner of the Year. He is active on campus in both FCA and Sooner Spectators, a program that brings patients from a children's hospital to the OU campus for a behind-the-scenes day with a team followed by a home competition.

Other male nominees included Jason Smith (Baylor football), Derek Tolan (Colorado men's golf), Jake Varner (Iowa State wrestling), Tony Thompson (Kansas baseball), Scott Sellers (Kansas State indoor and outdoor track), Mark Ellis (Missouri wrestling); Jordan Burroughs (Nebraska wrestling), German Fernandez (Oklahoma State cross country, indoor and outdoor track), Colt McCoy (Texas football), Gerald Phiri (Texas A&M indoor and outdoor track) and Graham Harrell (Texas Tech football).