Husker senior receiver Brandon Kinnie is one of 55 NU student-athletes set to graduate Saturday.
Photo by Scott Bruhn/Nebraska Communications

Huge Class of Huskers Set to Graduate Saturday

By NU Athletic Communications

Lincoln - A huge class of 55 current and former Husker student-athletes across all sports will earn their undergraduate degrees from the University of Nebraska during commencement exercises on Saturday morning at the Bob Devaney Sports Center.

The large class of December graduates represents 17 of Nebraska's 23 varsity sports, while the individuals in the class came to the University of Nebraska from 18 states, Jamaica, Canada and Croatia.

Coach Bo Pelini's Nebraska football program filled the list of Husker student-athlete graduates with 22 current and former players. Eleven Huskers from the 21-player 2011 senior class will earn degrees, giving Nebraska 13 seniors who will enter the Capital One Bowl with degrees in hand. In addition, five members of this year's junior class (Kenny Anderson, Will Compton, Ben Cotton, Baker Steinkuhler, Josh Williams) will receive their undergraduate diplomas prior to the bowl game.

Coach Gary Pepin's Nebraska track and field program also will be well-represented during graduation ceremonies, with 10 current and former Huskers earning degrees. Track and field's contingent of seven male and three female student-athletes is headlined by the 2011 Nebraska Male Student-Athlete of the Year Nicholas Gordon. Gordon was the 2009 NCAA Indoor Long Jump champion and a CoSIDA Academic All-American.

Coach Pablo Morales' swimming and diving program expects to graduate six student-athletes, while Coach Dan Kendig's women's gymnastics program will add five student-athletes to the list of graduates.

Coach John Cook's volleyball program, Coach Mark Manning's wrestling program and Coach Bill Spangler's men's golf team will each add a pair of graduates. Baseball, softball, soccer, bowling and women's golf will each add one graduate.

Nebraska continues to feature one of the highest graduation rates in the nation, while leading the nation in the number of CoSIDA Academic All-Americans (294) and NCAA Top Eight Award winners (16) across all sports.

December 2011 Nebraska Student-Athlete Graduates (55)

Student-Athlete (Sport) Hometown (Major)

  • Kenny Anderson (Football) Omaha, Neb. (Business Administration)
  • Jess Andrews (Swimming & Diving) Gillette, Wyo. (Nutrition Science)
  • Mary Kate Bird (Women's Golf) Kansas City, Mo. (Business Administration)
  • Anthony Blue (Football) Cedar Hill, Texas (Art)
  • Austin Braman (Track & Field) Buffalo, Kan. (Agricultural Economics)
  • Mike Caputo (Football) Omaha, Neb. (Communication Studies)
  • Alexa Cardona (Soccer) Lincoln, Neb. (Business Administration)
  • Will Compton (Football) Bonne Terre, Mo. (Business Administration)
  • Ben Cotton (Football) Ames, Iowa (Business Administration)
  • Lara Crofford (Track & Field/Cross Country) Newville, Pa. (Nutrition, Exercise and Health Science)
  • Jon Damkroger (Football) Firth, Neb. (Business Administration)
  • Bear Danley (Men's Gymnastics) Buffalo Grove, Ill. (Electrical Engineering)
  • Dax Danns (Track & Field) Lemon Grove, Calif. (Sociology)
  • Erin Davis (Women's Gymnastics) Round Rock, Texas (Psychology)
  • Brooke Delano (Volleyball) Bellevue, Neb. (Sociology)
  • Claire Desormey (Swimming & Diving) St. Charles, Ill. (Art)
  • Steve Engstrom (Football) Lincoln, Neb. (Criminology and Criminal Justice)
  • Arna Erega (Track & Field) Rijeka, Croatia (Psychology/Sociology)
  • Nicholas Gordon (Track & Field) Kingston, Jamaica (Political Science)
  • Thomas Grove (Football) Arlington, Neb. (Biological Sciences)
  • Ashley Guile (Softball) Olathe, Kan. (Special Education/Coaching)
  • Brittnee Habbib (Women's Gymnastics) North York, Ontario, Canada (Communication Studies)
  • Paul Hamilton (Track & Field) Sidney, Neb. (Marketing)
  • Matt Holt (Football) Lee's Summit, Mo. (Finance)
  • Blaine Hoppenrath (Swimming & Diving) Liberty, Mo. (Industrial Engineering)
  • Josh Ihnen (Wrestling) Sheldon, Iowa (Finance)
  • Austin Jones (Football) Aurora, Colo. (Communication Studies)
  • Marcel Jones (Football) Phoenix, Ariz. (Construction Management)
  • Trey Jordan (Track & Field) Troy, Texas (Sociology)
  • Brandie Kavalec (Swimming & Diving) Loveland, Colo. (Communication Studies)
  • Brandon Kinnie (Football) Kansas City, Mo. (Sociology)
  • Michael Koehnlein (Wrestling) West Minster, Calif. (Sociology)
  • Karyn LaCour (Track & Field) Humble, Texas (Special Education)
  • Tyler Lansangan (Baseball) Kansas City, Mo. (Finance)
  • Luke Lingenfelter (Football) Plainview, Neb. (Biological Systems Engineering)
  • Jay Martin (Football) Waverly, Neb. (Business Administration/Finance)
  • Meredith Mathies (Swimming & Diving) Wichita, Kan. (Management)
  • Rachell McClain (Swimming & Diving) Henderson, Nev. (Communication Studies)
  • Marcus Mendoza (Football) Houston, Texas (History)
  • Terrence Moore (Football) New Orleans, La. (Sociology)
  • Kassandra Nathe (Women's Gymnastics) Sartell, Minn. (Child, Youth and Family Studies)
  • Blaise Rewaka (Track & Field) Ardsley, N.Y. (Political Science)
  • Maria Scaffidi (Women's Gymnastics) Hartland, Wis. (Deaf or Hard of Hearing Education)
  • Stephanie Seich (Women's Gymnastics) South Amboy, N.J. (Nutrition, Exercise and Health Science)
  • Cylend Simmons (Track & Field) San Diego, Calif. (Sociology)
  • Katie Ann Sopp (Bowling) Circle Pines, Minn. (Business Administration/Management)
  • Kody Spano (Football) Stephenville, Texas (Accounting)
  • Baker Steinkuhler (Football) Lincoln, Neb. (Business Administration)
  • Brett Sundberg (Men's Golf) Lincoln, Neb. (Finance)
  • Lance Thorell (Football) Loomis, Neb. (Agribusiness)
  • Latravis Washington (Football) Bradenton, Fla. (Ethnic Studies)
  • Jordan Wilberger (Volleyball) Scottsbluff, Neb. (Middle Grades Education)
  • Josh Williams (Football) Denton, Texas (Business Administration)
  • Andrew Wyatt (Men's Golf) Lake Forest, Ill. (Finance)
  • Will Yancy (Football) Glendale, Ariz. (Merchandising)


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