Lilly King named Big Ten Female Athlete of the Year

Lilly King has made history — again.

The Big Ten announced Wednesday that Indiana’s star swimmer is the league’s Female Athlete of the Year, making her the first woman in IU history to receive the prestigious award.

King, whose year began with a gold medal at the Olympic Games in Rio and ended with national championships in the 100 and 200 breaststroke, joins Jim Spivey (1982), Sunder Nix (1984), Steve Alford (1987), Anthony Thompson (1990) and Derek Drouin (2013) on a list of IU athletes who have received the award.

The Big Ten has honored a Female Athlete of the Year since 1983. Winners are selected by a panel of conference media members from nominations submitted by each institution.

“It is hard to believe what Lilly King has accomplished in her short two years at Indiana University,” IU coach Ray Looze said in a statement. “I admire the positive female role model she has become in Bloomington. Her confidence and courage are traits we want all our athletes to emulate at IU.”

Last summer, King won gold in the 100 breast and in the 400 medley relay with Team USA. Those performances were enough for King to earn USA Swimming’s Golden Goggle Award for Breakout Performer of the Year.

Back at school, King’s success continued.

The Evansville native earned Big Ten Swimmer of the Championships and Swimmer of the Year awards after winning conference titles in the 100 breast, 200 breast, 200 IM and the 400 medley relay.

King also successfully defended her NCAA titles in the 100 breast and 200 breast, becoming the first swimmer or diver in Big Ten history to win four individual national titles.

Along with her national championship wins, King received four All-America honors and helped the Hoosiers finish eighth overall at the NCAA Championships — the second-best finish in school history.

For King, making history is nothing new.

“She is a pleasure to both coach and have on a team and we look forward to her very bright future,” Looze said.

8 comments

  1. Coach Looze probably wishing his contract included incentive motivators similar to Coach Miller’s contract.

  2. Lilly King is a World Class athlete and a great representative of IU’s storied Swimming And Diving Programs! GO Lilly!

  3. The pink torpedo Russian girl (who trained in California) sort of redeemed herself when she beat King’s time in the breaststroke leg of the women’s medley relay event. Just sayin….

  4. Those are called “flying starts” for a reason. Only times from the first leg, from a flat start of a relay, can qualify for a record swim.

  5. My God Harvard, as usual, anything to rain on the parade. Only you would come up with something like this. lets remember, when they faced each other in the pool, Lilly was the victor! Just sayin…..

  6. Lance Armstrong was busted for PEDs….Denied it for years.

    I do believe there is extra animosity toward the Russian girl because Donald Trump believes her smile is as cute as Janet Evans.

    And now for something completely different….

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