COLUMBUS, Ohio - Junior Kyle Snyder, the youngest Olympic champion in United States wrestling history and a two-time Big Ten champion, is a semifinalist for the prestigious AAU James E. Sullivan Award.
The AAU Sullivan Award has been presented annually since 1930 to the most outstanding amateur athlete in the United States. Representatives from the AAU created the Sullivan Award with the intent to recognize contributions and achievements across the country of amateur athletes.
Fans can vote for Snyder starting today (Monday, March 6), through Monday, March 13th at 11:59 p.m.
Snyder added a second Big Ten title at 285 lbs. to his resume yesterday, topping previously undefeated and second-ranked Connor Medbery of Wisconsin, 8-5. His win helped the Buckeyes win their second team title in the past three years.
A junior from Woodbine, Md., Snyder is 12-0 this year and 10 of those wins coming by bonus points. Dating back to last season, he's won 23 consecutive collegiate matches and averaged over 15 points per match with five falls, eight technical falls and five major decisions. In one of the most memorable championships matches in NCAA history, he ended Nick Gwiazdowski's 88-match win streak in front of a sold out crowd at Madison Square Garden.
On the international scene, Snyder won the gold medal at 97kg last August in the Rio Games, becoming the first active Ohio State student-athlete to win a Olympic championship since Jerry Lucas (basketball) in 1960. Most recently, he won the Ivan Yarygin Grand Prix in Russia, regarded as the toughest Open international freestyle event of the year.
Only three wrestlers have ever won the James E. Sullivan Award, Olympic champions John Smith (1990), Bruce Baumgartner (1995) and Rulon Gardner (2000).