Oct. 17, 2012
BERKELEY - California defender and co-captain Steve Birnbaum was named one of 10 finalists for the 2012 Senior CLASS Award, which honors student-athletes who excel both on and off the field. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be classified as an NCAA Division I senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence - community, classroom, character and competition.
See below for the complete list of finalists.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School ®, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
Named a preseason All-American by College Soccer News, Birnbaum, has played in 54 games for the Golden Bears tallying 10 points on six assists and two goals during his career. He was named captain for both his junior and senior seasons. Birnbaum was named an Academic All-Pac-12 honorable mention his sophomore and junior years, and earned a spot on the first team All-Pac-12 team in 2011.
In the classroom, Birnbaum is majoring in social welfare with a GPA of 3.0 and is on track to an early graduation in December 2012. He is an active member in the Irvine, Calif., community with dedication to the youth soccer programs as a coach and mentor, and is a representative of the "Kids in Irvine." Birnbaum is also continually supporting the Northwood area philanthropies and the Orange County community.
The finalists were chosen by a media committee from the list of 30 men's candidates announced in September. Nationwide fan voting begins immediately to help select the winner. Fans are encouraged to vote on the Senior CLASS Award website through Nov. 19. Fans can vote on that page - and vote once per day - through midnight CT on the final day of voting. Fan votes will be combined with media and Division I head coaches' votes to determine the winner.
The Senior CLASS Award winners will be announced during the 2012 NCAA Men's College Cup, which will take place Dec. 7 and 9 in Hoover, Ala.
For more information on the finalists, visit seniorCLASSaward.com.
Senior CLASS Award Men's Soccer Finalists
Carlos Alvarez, Connecticut
Ashton Bennett, Coastal Carolina
Steve Birnbaum, California
Scott Caldwell, Akron
Anthony Hobbs, Florida International
Ryan Hollingshead, UCLA
Ryan McDuff, Brown
Dillon Powers, Notre Dame
Eric Schoenle, West Virginia
Kyle Zobeck, Valparaiso