Buckeye Student-Athletes Set to Graduate Sunday
May 3, 2014
COLUMBUS, Ohio – Sunday, 155 current and former Ohio State student-athletes received their degrees at spring semester commencement at Ohio Stadium. The ceremony, which begins at noon, will be streamed online: http://commencement.osu.edu/
Among the graduates are national champions, Big Ten Medal of Honor winners and All-Americans.
Chelsea Aton is a four-year letterwinner on the Ohio State synchronized swimming team. The Noblesville, Ind., native has excelled in every aspect of being a student-athlete at Ohio State. Academically, Aton is a three-time Academic All-Big Ten, two-time Big Ten Distinguished Scholar, three-time Ohio State Scholar-Athlete and was named to the U.S. Collegiate Academic Team in 2012 and 2013. Athletically, the U.S. Collegiate All-American led the Buckeyes to two overall U.S. Collegiate Championship titles (2011-12), three North Regional Championships (2011-13) and two U.S. Senior National Championship titles.
Claire-Louise Bode was a member of the 2013 NCAA Champion rowing team, rowing in the First Varsity Eight Boat. She was named the 2013 Big Ten Rowing Athlete of the Year and the Ohio State Athlete of the Year after picking up Pocock First Team All-America, CRCA First Team All-Central Region and First Team All-Big Ten honors. Bode won gold at the 2013 Big Ten Championships and bronze at 2013 NCAA Championships as stroke seat of the First Varsity Eight.
Aaron Craft, the 2014 National Defensive Player of the Year and First Team Senior CLASS Award All-American, finished an illustrious career both as a student and athlete in 2014. The Findlay, Ohio, native personified success, class and determination during his collegiate career. A three-time Academic All-American, Craft set Ohio State and Big Ten records in leading the Buckeyes to four consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances, two regular season conference titles and an Ohio State senior class record of 119 career wins. In both the Ohio State and Big Ten record books, Craft sits atop the career steals list with 337 while owning the Buckeye record for assists with 694, which is fifth all-time in conference history.
A native of Brunswick, Ohio, senior Allison Elber is a four-time Ohio State Scholar-Athlete, three-time Academic All-Big Ten and Big Ten Distinguished Scholar. A team captain, Elber set program history as part of the first women’s team at Ohio State to win an NCAA Championship. As a member of the first varsity eight, Elber won a bronze medal at the 2013 NCAA Championships and a gold medal at the 2013 Big Ten Championships, earning CRCA First Team All-Central Region, Pocock First Team All-America and First Team All-Big Ten honors. Throughout her four-year collegiate career, Elber was a member of the 2013 and 2011 Big Ten Championship winning teams, guiding the Buckeyes to their third and fourth conference titles, respectively. A psychology major, Elber will be attending graduate school at the University of Denver to study sport and performance psychology.
Peter Kobelt was the 2014 National Indoor Most Outstanding Player, leading Ohio State men’s tennis to its first national title in program history. A two-time All-American, five-time regional champion, Kobelt has guided the Buckeyes to four consecutive Big Ten regular-season titles, three B1G tournament wins and two NCAA Final Four appearances. A four-time OSU Scholar-Athlete and two-time Academic All-Big Ten selection, Kobelt is in the Top 10 on the OSU career singles and doubles wins list, collecting more than 240 combined wins at Ohio State.
Redshirt senior Michael Newburger is the 2013 NCAA Champion and a two-time All-American on pommel horse. Newburger holds the NCAA and Ohio State record on the event (16.25), earning Big Ten Gymnast of the Week and CGA Gymnast of the Week honors for his record-setting performance. A team captain, Newburger is the 2013 Winter Cup Champion and 2013 U.S. Bronze Medalist on pommel horse. Academically, Newburger has earned Capital One Academic at-Large First Team and Capital One Academic All-District honors as well as being a four-time Distinguished Merit Scholar and National Buckeye Scholar and a three-time Big Ten Distinguished Scholar.
Logan Schuss was the first Buckeye to earn USILA All-America honors three times, including a second-team spot as a senior in 2013 when he led Ohio State to the ECAC tournament title and the NCAA quarterfinals. He was a two-time ECAC Player of the Year and the first Buckeye to earn first team all-conference honors four times. He ended his career as the program’s all-time leading goal scorer and had at least one point in all 62 games of his Buckeye career, scoring 146 goals and adding 91 assists for 237 points. He was a four-time Ohio State Scholar-Athlete and three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection, as well as a USILA Scholar All-America.
Melanie Shaffer (women’s gymnastics/speech and hearing), who has 11 career all-around victories, is a three-time OSU Scholar-Athlete, two-time Academic All-Big Ten selection and was named an NACGC/W Scholastic All-American as a sophomore. The 2014 first team All-Big Ten selection who previously was a two-time second team All-Big Ten pick, posted a career-high 39.400 to win the all-around against Minnesota earlier this season and has five all-around wins in 2014. Shaffer, who finished 14th with a 39.025 in the all-around at NCAA Championships a season ago, has won the floor exercise title four times this season, uneven bars twice and balance beam once.
John Simon was a leader on and off the field whose efforts were always exemplary. He was repeatedly referred to as the heart and soul of the undefeated, 2012 football team by coach Urban Meyer, and he has the distinction of being only the eighth two-time captain in school history. He was twice named a semifinalist for the prestigious Lott IMPACT Award and in 2012 he was a finalist for the Fellowship of Christian Athlete's Bobby Bowden Award. He capped his career by being named the Big Ten Conference's 2012 Defensive Player of the Year and the Big Ten’s Defensive Lineman of the Year. A four-year Varsity O letterwinner, Simon played in 50 games and started 37 consecutive games before a knee injury sidelined him for the final game of his Ohio State career, a 26-21 win over Michigan that completed a 12-0 regular season for the No. 4-ranked Buckeyes.