Courtesy Michigan Athletics
FORT WORTH, Texas – University of Michigan women’s gymnastics senior Sierra Brooks was named the 2023 AAI Award winner, it was announced this evening (April 11) by the American Athletic Incorporated.
The AAI Award is considered to be the Heisman Trophy of gymnastics and is given annually to the nation’s top senior women’s gymnast. In the 31-year history of the award, Brooks is the fourth Michigan women’s gymnast to earn the honor. Natalie Wojcik won the award in 2022, Kylee Botterman received the award in 2011 and Beth Wymer received the honor in 1995.
Brooks and Wojcik are just the third pair of teammates to win the award in back-to-back years as Alabama had two-consecutive winners in 1985-86 and Georgia had back-to-back winners in 1998-99.
The Plainfield, Ill. native has cemented herself as one of the greatest Michigan gymnasts of all time after a standout senior career in which she became the first U-M gymnast to be named a three-time Regional Gymnast of the Year and just the third Michigan gymnast to be named a two-time Big Ten Gymnast of the Year.
She was the 13th Wolverine in program history to earn first team all-conference honors on four occasions, joining Wojcik as the last U-M gymnast to do so. Brooks earned 16 event titles in 2023, including four all-around titles this season.
The senior all-arounder was a 2023 regional champion with a perfect 10.0 on floor. She also earned a perfect 10.0 on vault at Rutgers, scored a career-high 9.975 on uneven bars against No. 1 Oklahoma, won a share of the Big Ten uneven bars title and was a three-time Big Ten Gymnast of the Week honoree.
Brooks ranked in the top 20 nationally in all four individual events and eighth nationally in the all-around. She finished the season ranked fifth nationally on the vault, 14th on the uneven bars, 19th on the beam and 18th on the floor. Furthermore, Brooks led the North East region in the all-around, vault and floor, while ranking second on beam and third on uneven bars.
Outside of the gym, Brooks is the president of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee and is an outstanding student-athlete as a business administration major in the Ross School of Business with a minor in entrepreneurship. She is a three-time WCGA Academic All-American honoree, a COSIDA Academic All-District honoree, a Big Ten Distinguished Scholar and a three-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree. She has also received the Leaders and Best Award and the Bates Deskins Award for most outstanding student-athlete in her class as a sophomore and junior.
Brooks was named a James B. Scholar in March of 2021 and was a leadership development ambassador, representing women’s gymnastics. Among all of her activities, she also is a student mentor for incoming freshmen and is a Brown Girls Do Representative.