Colorado State student-athletes host inaugural Rammies award show

Alex Balsiger winner of the 2012-13 Knight of the Green and Gold Award

Alex Balsiger winner of the 2012-13 Knight of the Green and Gold Award

April 22, 2013

Chris Feller
Athletic Media Relations 

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FORT COLLINS, Colo. - Monday night Colorado State's student-athletes gathered at the Drake Center to take part in the inaugural Rammies award show, honoring some of CSU athletics' most outstanding members.

The event, which was sponsored by Colorado State's Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC), drew over 400 attendees including athletes, coaches and athletic department staff.

Whitney Henderson, Vice President of SAAC and a senior track and field athlete, was a driving force being the creation of the Rammies.

"We wanted to build in more traditions in the athletic department, especially with the Bold New Era that (Athletics Director Jack Graham) is promoting. We wanted to do our part and allow the athletes to come together at the end of the year and celebrate."

Kirby Pettitt (men's golf) and Ashlie Ortega (softball) emceed throughout the night, both adding to the humorous atmosphere of the crowd.

Men's basketball Head Coach Larry Eustachy was given the Best Coaching Moment Award for his postgame celebration following CSU's victory at home over San Diego State in early February.

Junior football player Conner Roggy received the Most Inspirational Award, while Breann Fuller, a senior on the swimming and diving team, was recognized as the recipient of the Sportsmanship Award.

The Stud Award was presented to sophomore Jon Octeus of the men's basketball team for his game-sealing dunk against the Aztecs.

Amy Medina, a junior track and field athlete, graciously accepted the Not Top Ten Award for her mistimed high-jump attempt early in the outdoor season.

Deputy Athletic Director John Morris and Senior Associate A.D. for Internal Operations Christine Susemihl announced Seth Butler, a junior track and field athlete, and Dana Cranston, a senior volleyball standout, as the recipients of the Male and Female Leadership Award. Butler and Cranston were both nominated by their respective coaching staffs as individuals who represented CSU to an exceptional degree in all circumstances.

Monday night also allowed the SAAC to promote the Rams Supporting Rams program, which was designed to increase a sense of community throughout the student-athlete population. Throughout the year CSU's athletic teams have been paired with another squad with the hopes that each team will support the other. Programs have decorated locker rooms, attended competitions and cheered their fellow Rams in both victory and defeat.

The 2012-13 Rams Supporting Rams Award, as presented by Athletic Director Jack Graham, was given to the women's golf team who went above and beyond in their support for the women's volleyball team, even trekking to Laramie, Wyo., to root on the green and gold.

The night was capped off with the anointing of the first-ever Knight of the Green and Gold Award. The honor went to the winner of a competition between seven CSU student-athletes who exemplified leadership, sportsmanship and Ram pride throughout the year. The seven individuals fiercely competed in a dance competition, question and answer session and talent show. Track and field junior Alex Balsiger took home the title after winning over the judges with his poetic rendition of the 2Chainz rap song "I'm Different."

With such success in its first year Henderson hopes to see the Rammies become an integral part of the athletics community.

"I hope this becomes an annual tradition where people get excited and want to be part of it. We want it to seem like the Rammies have been around as long as CSU has."

Graham was equally impressed with the event.

"We are looking at the human side of people who are supposed to perform and do perform at a high level. They sacrifice so much and have so much discipline. To see them stand up in front of each other and make fun of themselves is what humanity is all about. It was just a terrific night."

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