04/06/08 — Mitchell -- Osborne Award winner

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Mitchell -- Osborne Award winner

By MOC Sports Information
Published in Sports on April 6, 2008 4:45 AM

MOC Sports Information

MOUNT OLIVE -- Sam Mitchell, a senior student-athlete at Mount Olive College, has been named winner of the prestigious Murphy Osborne Award.

Considered the top honor among Conference Carolinas institutions, the award recognizes excellence in academics, athletics and service and leadership. Mitchell, a native of Boyd, Wis., was selected among 11 finalists.

"Sam is truly the ideal student-athlete," said Jeff Eisen, director of athletics at Mount Olive College. "She is outstanding in the classroom, in competition and in the community. We are proud of Sam and so pleased that she has been recognized by Conference Carolinas with this outstanding honor."

A psychology major with a 3.82 grade-point average, Mitchell is a two-time CoSIDA Academic All-District selection and two-time Conference Carolinas All-Academic recipient. In February, she became just the second student-athlete in MOC history to earn an NCAA Post-Graduate Scholarship.

Mitchell was one of 29 fall sports student-athletes from all three NCAA Divisions -- I, II and III -- to receive the award.

"Sam Mitchell epitomizes student-athletes throughout Conference Carolinas and NCAA Division II," said Dr. Alan Patterson, Conference Carolinas commissioner. "Her academic record and commitment to education are among the elite of all students. Sam has given selflessly as the Mount Olive student advisor to Conference Carolinas and as the conference representative to the NCAA.

"It makes it even more meaningful that Sam has competed at a level deserving of regional and national recognition."

Mitchell represents MOC and Conference Carolinas on the NCAA Division II National Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC). She has been instrumental in fund-raisers for Make-A-Wish Foundation -- the official charity of Division II SAAC.

Mount Olive, thanks to Mitchell's tireless efforts, has been the top fund-raiser in the conference each of the past two years. She spearheaded a fund-raiser to coincide with Mount Olive's nationally-televised men's basketball game at 2007 Division II national champion Barton.

Mitchell raised more than $4,500 for Make-A-Wish.

A two-sport athlete this season for the Trojans, Mitchell serves as a volunteer with Habitat for Humanity and for special needs clinics. She also spends time as a student ambassador for the college admissions department and secretary for Fellowship of Christian Athletes.

During her spare time, Mitchell is a contributing writer for "Double-A Zone," the official blog of the NCAA.

On the volleyball court, Mitchell earned A-A honorable mention and was the 2007 Conference Carolinas player of the year. Mitchell grabbed all-region and all-conference honors for three consecutive seasons. The outside hitter posted 1,909 career kills, second-most behind record-holder Heidi Busch; and a program-best 1,503 digs on defense.

Mitchell is also a member of the Trojans' first-ever track and field team. She recently qualified for the 400-meter event at the Raleigh Relays at N.C. State.