"I am so honored to receive the Honda Award. This whole season has been one highlight after another and I feel so fortunate to be a part of the collegiate experience. I am happy to share this award with my teammates, coaches and the Gator fans as their support is so important," said Sloan, who last week won the NCAA all-around and individual balance beam title, and helped her Florida team claim their first-ever NCAA team championship.
"It was fun to watch Bridget compete with her Gator teammates as it was evident that they have a true passion for the sport of gymnastics. Bridget is a special talent and the University of Florida is honored to have her receive this notable award," said University of Florida Athletics Director Jeremy Foley.
In 2011, Sloan deferred college admission to train and qualify for the 2012 London Olympics. An elbow injury at the U.S. Gymnastics Olympic Trials in June 2012 ended her attempt to qualify, but not her desire to continue competing at the collegiate level.
"Bridget's performance this season was wonderful. She's worked incredibly hard and that has paid off with outstanding results. Thank you to the Honda Awards program for sponsoring this prestigious honor to recognize the amazing abilities of collegiate women student-athletes," said University of Florida gymnastics head coach Rhonda Faehn.
The CWSA presents the Honda Sports Award annually to top women athletes in 12 NCAA-sanctioned sports. With this honor, Sloan, a freshman majoring in Social and Behavioral Sciences who wants to pursue a degree in Sports Marketing, becomes a finalist for the Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year and the 2013 Honda Cup. She was chosen for the Honda Sports Award by a vote among the United States Elite Coaches Association. Finalists included Vanessa Zamarripa (UCLA), Rheagan Courville (LSU), and Alina Weinstein (Illinois).
The Collegiate Women Sports Awards has honored the nation's top NCAA women athletes for 37 years, recognizing superior athletic skills, leadership, academic excellence and eagerness to participate in community service. Since commencing its sponsorship in 1986, Honda has provided more than $2.5 million in institutional grants to the universities of the award winners and nominees to support women's athletics programs at the institutions. Previous Honda Cup winners include Brittney Griner, Ann Meyers Drysdale, Lisa Fernandez, Misty May-Treanor, Maya Moore, and Candace Parker.