OXFORD, Miss. - A trio of Ole Miss student-athletes were honored Thursday with selection to the Capital One/CoSIDA Academic All-District At-Large Team for their outstanding performance in the classroom and on the tennis courts and golf course.
Senior Johan Backstrom of men's tennis and sophomore Forrest Gamble of men's golf were named to the men's at-large team, while recent graduate Caroline Rohde-Moe of women's tennis made the women's at-large team. One of the more difficult all-district teams to make, the at-large team includes 13 sports for women and 12 for men.
"Our teams continue to strive for excellence in the classroom," said senior associate athletics director Derek Cowherd. "Our students push each other on the courts and courses and motivate each other to achieve academic excellence. For both tennis teams to have finished the season in the top 32 and also have two student-athletes share this prestigious distinction is proof positive that we have very special tennis student-athletes here at Ole Miss. Men's golf just posted their best team GPA in over 10 years for the spring 2014 semester which is a testament to their hard work and dedication to achieve academic success."
As members of the All-District team (Ole Miss is in District VI), the three Rebels are eligible for Academic All-America honors.
To be eligible for the award, student-athletes must hold a 3.3 grade point average or higher and must be in their second year at the nominating institution. Student-athletes must also have competed in at least 50 percent of the team's games at the time of nomination.
Backstrom, who wrapped up an excellent career on and off the courts this year for the Rebels, made the all-district team for the second year in a row. The Uppsala, Sweden native boasts a 3.92 cumulative GPA in managerial finance and accounting, which includes a perfect 4.0 this past semester. He was inducted into the Phi Kappa Phi National Honor Society last fall. Backstrom helped the Rebels to their 21st consecutive NCAA appearance and clinched the team's first round win over Northwestern.
Gamble, a native of Birmingham, Alabama, holds a perfect 4.0 GPA in mathematics. He is a junior in the classroom and plans to attend medical school after graduation. Gamble appeared in nine tournaments for the Rebels this season, posting a 73.81 stroke average. He fired a season-low round of 69 at the Chris Schenkel Invitational and recorded a career-best finish of T24 at the Shoal Creek Invitational.
Rohde-Moe, a native Bloomenholm, Norway, concluded her outstanding career on and off the courts, graduating with honors in Managerial Finance and Economics. She posted a cumulative GPA of 3.94 for her career, and received a Taylor Medal (highest academic honor at the University of Mississippi). She was also a finalist for the SEC Boyd McWhorter Postgraduate Scholarship. The two-time All-SEC honoree helped lead the Rebels to their sixth straight NCAA appearance and a win over Texas Tech in the first round and was named the ITA Southern Region Most Improved Senior.
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