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Cathi Aradi

USA Softball's Stacey Nuveman Named Sullivan Award Finalist

ORLANDO, FL -The Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) today announced the names of the top ten finalists for the 70th Annual AAU James E. Sullivan Memorial Award which recognizes the top amateur athlete in the nation. The ten first round finalists are: Stacey Nuveman (softball), Christian Ahrens (rowing), Mark Ruiz (diving), Matt Busbee (swimming), Stephen Neal (wrestling), Mateen Cleaves (men's basketball), Ron Dayne (football), Luke Donald (men's golf), Jason Jennings (baseball) and Kelly & Coco Miller (women's basketball).

The AAU Sullivan Award recognizes athletes who have achieved athletic excellence, exhibit leadership, character, sportsmanship and the ideals of amateurism. It has been presented annually by the AAU since 1930 as a salute to founder and past president of the AAU, and a pioneer in amateur sports, James E. Sullivan.

The ten first-round finalists will be reduced to the top five and their names will be released in mid-February. From the top five names, the National winner will be formally announced in late March in New York City.

Considered the "Oscar" of sports awards, the AAU James E. Sullivan Award has been presented to prominent athletes of our time including last year's recipient Chamique Holdsclaw. Others include: Peyton Manning (1997), William "Bill" Bradley (1965), Dan Jansen (1994), Janet Evans (1989), Jim Abbott (1987), Jackie Joyner-Kersee (1986), Greg Louganis (1984), and the late Florence Griffith-Joyner (1988).