Providence, R.I. – Brown senior defender Ryan McDuff has been named the 2012 Senior CLASS award winner in NCAA Division I men's soccer. The Plano, Texas, native, is Brown's first-ever winner since the award was created in 2002.
The award, chosen by a nationwide vote of Division I men's soccer coaches, national soccer media and fans, is given annually to the most outstanding senior student-athlete in Division I men's soccer. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence – classroom, community, character and competition.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
"I'm extremely humbled to be named the Senior CLASS Award winner and honored to be included in the conversation with such an accomplished group of candidates. Each fully embodies what being a 'student-athlete' is about, having done incredible things in the classroom, on the field, and in their surrounding communities," McDuff said. "Thank you to all of the families, teachers, coaches, administrators and friends who have guided and supported the Senior CLASS candidates in our endeavors. It goes without saying that winning the Senior CLASS Award wouldn't have been possible without all of my peers at Brown University who have sacrificed their time to build the projects and programs that we hope can continue to positively impact the student body and Providence community."
McDuff helped the Bears to a 2011 Ivy League Championship, and four consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances. A dual concentrator in business, entrepreneurship and organizations, as well as political science, McDuff was a two-year team captain who led Brown's back line to 11 shutouts for a shutout percentage that ranked among the top in the country. The Bears finished the year with a 13-3-3 record, and fell in the NCAA second round to No. 2 Maryland, which is playing in the College Cup semifinals this evening.
"Ryan McDuff is an exemplary student-athlete. He is a great captain, teammate and competitor who is an outstanding representative of the Brown men's soccer team. His selection as a Senior CLASS Award winner is well deserved," head coach Patrick Laughlin said.
McDuff serves as the head teaching assistant for multiple management classes, and is a peer advisor for Brown freshman students to help ease the transition from high school to college. He volunteers at Project GOAL, an organization focused on developing Rhode Island's disadvantaged youth through after-school tutoring and soccer programs, and he works with Team Impact to match children facing life-threatening diseases with Brown athletic teams. He frequently works with the Providence Boys & Girls Club, and regularly visits local elementary schools.
For more information on the Senior CLASS award, go to www.seniorclassaward.com.