Minnesota senior Derek Gearman was named the 2007 Big Ten Outdoor Field Athlete of the Year, as the Big Ten Conference Office announced their season awards and honor teams today. Gearman was also recognized as the Big Ten Field Event Athlete of the Championships.
Gearman posted two runner-up finishes in scoring a team-high 21 points in individual events at last weekend’s Big Ten Championships in State College, Pa. The Lennox, S.D., native finished second in the long jump with a career-best leap of 25 feet, 6 inches. Competing at the same time in the high jump, Gearman cleared 7-0 1/4 to capture second place in that event as well. For good measure, Gearman added a fourth-place showing in the triple jump with a season-long effort of 51-0 1/4 and ran a leg of the Gophers’ 4x100-meter relay that finished fourth. Gearman has earned NCAA Midwest Region Championships berths in the long jump, triple jump and high jump.
Gearman and five Golden Gopher teammates were named to All-Big Ten honor squads. Big Ten hammer champion Adam Schnaible earned first-team accord, while Gearman, Aaron Buzard, Jason Erickson, Sayfe Jassim and Walter Langkau were named to the second team. Buzard finished second in the 400-meter dash and joined Erckson, Jassim and Langkau in the runner-up 4x400-meter relay.
Langkau was also the Minnesota recipient of the Big Ten Sportsmanship Award. The student-athletes chosen are individuals who have distinguished themselves through sportsmanship and ethical behavior. In addition, the student-athletes must be in good academic standing and have demonstrated good citizenship outside of the sports-competition setting.
Minnesota’s next competition is the NCAA Midwest Region Championships in Des Moines, Iowa, on May 25-26.