NewsUSA WrestlingInternationalWomenUSAW

LAST DAY TO VOTE: Olympic champs Mensah-Stock, Taylor, Steveson among AAU Sullivan Award nominees; Vote online for our wrestlers

by Gary Abbott, USA Wrestling

ORLANDO, Fla. (September 20, 2021) - There is only one national award that puts the best in sports, male and female, head-to-head for the title of “top athlete,” the AAU James E. Sullivan Award presented by Eastbay.

All three wrestlers who won Olympic gold medals for the United States in wrestling are among the finalists: Tamyra Mensah-Stock (women’s freestyle, 68 kg), David Taylor (men’s freestyle, 86 kg) and Gable Steveson (men’s freestyle, 125 kg).

These three Olympic champions were among an amazing nine U.S. wrestlers who won medals at the Tokyo Games this past summer.

Voting for the award is now open to the public

Two other wrestlers were among the 38 nominees for the award, as college wrestlers Nick Lee of Penn State and Nick Piccininni of Oklahoma Stare are also on the ballot.

Wrestling fans are encouraged to vote now and to vote often. People can vote for this award one time every 24 hours. You can vote every day through 11:59 p.m. on Monday, September 27, 2021.

“These exceptional athletes truly embody the spirit of the AAU James E. Sullivan Award,” said Jennings “Rusty” Buchanan, AAU President and CEO of the AAU. “They not only top performers in their sport, but also display qualities of leadership, good character, and sportsmanship both on and off the field.”

Last year, the AAU crowned co-winners wrestler Spencer Lee, University of Iowa and basketball player Sabrina Ionescu, University of Oregon.

Lee was the fifth wrestler to win the Sullivan Award, which also includes Olympic champions Bruce Baumgartner, Rulon Gardner, John Smith and Kyle Snyder.

The AAU James E. Sullivan Award presentation will be held at the Rosen Centre in Orlando, Fla. on Friday, October 22 with a special recognition reception in conjunction with the Orlando Magic later that night.

The vote for the 91st rendition of the award will be open to the public starting Monday, September 20, 2021. The AAU Sullivan Award has been presented annually since 1930 to the most outstanding athlete in the United States. Representatives from the Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) created the Sullivan Award with the intent to recognize contributions and achievements from athletes across the country.

Voting for the award is now open to the public

This year’s group of nominees also includes:

• Aari McDonald, Women’s Basketball, University of Arizona

• Allyson Felix, Track and Field, USA Track and Field

• Ariel Torres, Karate, USA Karate

• Athing Mu, Track and Field, USA Track and Field/Texas A&M

• Ayo Dosunmu, Basketball, University of Illinois

• Brad Snyder, Paralympic Swimming & Triathlon, US Naval Academy

• Caeleb Dressel, Swimming, USA Swimming

• Caitlin Clark, Women's Basketball, University of Iowa

• Dana Rettke, Volleyball, University of Wisconsin

• Dani Jones, Track and Field, University of Colorado Boulder

• Drew Timme, Basketball, Gonzaga University

• Erriyon Knighton, Track and Field, USA Track and Field

• Evan Medell, Paralympic Taekwondo, USA Taekwondo

• Grant Holloway, Track and Field, USA Track and Field

• Javonte Perkins, Basketball, Saint Louis University

• Jocelyn Alo, Softball, University of Oklahoma

• Julia Arciola, Baton Twirling, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

• Justin Fields, Football, Ohio State University

• Kevin Kopps, Baseball, University of Arkansas

• Logan Eggleston, Volleyball, University of Texas

• Luka Garza, Basketball, University of Iowa

• Lydia Jacoby, Swimming, USA Swimming

• Maddie Musselman, Water Polo, USA Water Polo

• Madison Lilley, Volleyball, University of Kentucky

• Michael Penix Jr, Football, Indiana University

• Obi Toppin, Basketball, University of Dayton

• Paige Bueckers, Women's Basketball, University of Connecticut

• Ryan Crouser, Track and Field, USA Track and Field

• Sam Howell, Football, University of North Carolina

• Simone Biles, Gymnastics, USA Gymnastics

• Sunisa Lee, Gymnastics, USA Gymnastics

• Sydney Hilley, Volleyball, University of Wisconsin

• Sydney McLaughlin, Track and Field, USA Track and Field