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Jacobsen, Smith Receive Big Sky's Top Scholar Athlete Award

OGDEN, Utah – Max Jacobsen and Stirling Smith were announced as NAU's 2014 Big Sky Conference Scholar Athlete Award recipients on Thursday for their athletic and academic performance during the 2013-14 school year. Jacobsen and Smith were the top Senior Golden Eagle scholar-athlete honorees at the annual Golden Eagle Awards banquet in April.

Jacobsen graduated last month with a 3.56 GPA in mechanical engineering. He was a three-time Big Sky All-Academic selection, A.D. Honor Roll recipient and Golden Eagle Scholar-Athlete while making a big impact on the court for the Lumberjack men's basketball team. The Lake Oswego, Ore. native earned All-Big Sky honorable mention accolades in his final season leading NAU to a second-place finish in the conference while averaging 12.3 points per game. He was among the nation's leaders in field goal percentage and finished his career with the seventh-best career field goal percentage in program history at 58.1 percent.

Smith was nearly perfect in the classroom, graduating last month with a 3.97 GPA in biomedical science with minors in chemistry and psychology. She earned WAC All-Academic honors and was named to the A.D. Honor Roll and Golden Eagle Scholar-Athlete list all four years in addition to serving on the NAU Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. Her final season was her best in the pool as she earned her first career medal with a third-place finish in the 200 breaststroke at the WAC Championships. She also scored points in the 100 breaststroke and 200 individual medley in helping the Lumberjack swimming & diving team capture their first WAC title in school history. The Stoughton, Wis. native left NAU with the second-fastest time in the 100 breast and fourth-fastest time in the 200 breast in school history.

To qualify for the Big Sky award, a student-athlete must have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.2 (on a 4.0 scale), be a member of the graduating class and/or have completed their last year of intercollegiate athletic eligibility, have completed at least two years of intercollegiate competition at the institution and be a letterwinner.