Three UCF Students Receive AAC Scholar-Athlete of the Year Awards for 2019-20 Season
By UCF Knights // July 31, 2020
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ORLANDO, FLORIDA – The American Athletic Conference announced its Scholar-Athlete of the Year awards for the 2019-20 season on Wednesday, and three UCF student-athletes were recognized in their respective sports.
Softball senior Alea White, men’s soccer senior Cal Jennings, and rowing senior Mia Cleary were chosen by the Faculty Athletic Representatives (FARs). Each will receive a post-graduate financial scholarship of $2,000 and a trophy.
They can accept the scholarship or defer it for a period of two years.
The recipients of the award must have maintained both excellent academic credentials and outstanding athletic performance during the year.
A First Team All-Conference selection in 2019, White has scattered her name throughout the UCF Softball record book. She ranks among the top 10 in 10 different categories and currently sits second all-time with 77 wins.
White is a three-time all-conference pitcher in The American and a two-time NFCA All-Region honoree.
The Land O’ Lakes, Fla., native has also excelled in the classroom. She earned a spot on the President’s Honor Roll with a 4.0 GPA in both the fall and spring semesters in 2019-20.
One of the most prolific scorers in UCF’s men’s soccer history, Cal Jennings was a two-time All-American and a semifinalist for the Hermann Trophy in both 2018 and 2019.
He netted four hat tricks during his tenure as a Knight and was the NCAA’s active leader in game-winning goals with a total of 17 by the end of his career. Two-time Offensive Player of the Year in The American, Jennings led UCF to back-to-back regular-season championships in 2018 and 2019.
The Roswell, Ga., native graduated a semester early with a degree in nonprofit management and a minor in sports business management. He was named a CoSIDA Second Team Academic All-American in 2019, earning six Dean’s List nods and one President’s Honor Roll semester at UCF.
He was drafted in the first round of the 2020 MLS SuperDraft and is currently suiting up for Memphis 901 FC.
A three-time conference champion, Cleary has rowed in UCF’s top boat, the Varsity Eight, in all four of her seasons with the Black and Gold. She was a member of The American’s Boat of the Year in 2017.
She helped UCF post a trio of Top 20 finishes at the NCAA Championship from 2017-19.
The Falls Church, Va., native has earned a spot on the President’s Honor Roll five times for 4.0 GPA semesters. She was named the Dr. John C. Hitt Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year in 2020.
Cleary is a three-time CRCA Scholar-Athlete and was named to the CoSIDA Academic All-District team in 2018 and 2019.
The American will announce the entirety of its All-Academic Team members, as well the Team Academic Excellence awards on Thursday.