Milton a Finalist for AAU Sullivan Award

ORLANDO ( -- The title of top amateur athlete will be put to a vote this week, as eight elite athletes, including UCF quarterback McKenzie Milton were announced as finalists for the 89th AAU James E. Sullivan Award. Other finalists include Mikaela Foecke, Rachel Garcia, Townley Haas, Aleia Hobbs, Morgan Hurd, Luke Maye and Kathryn Plummer.

The American Athletic Conference Player of the Year for the second year in a row, Milton’s horrific leg injury suffered late in the 2018 season sparked talk amongst the world of college football. Coming off an undefeated season in 2017, Milton was poised to continue to lead the charge and continued perfect record for UCF into the postseason again, before his season ending injury. The Kapolei native finished eighth for the Heisman Trophy voting in 2017 and then sixth in 2018, despite the injury. The reaction around the nation showed how much he is revered, appreciated, and supported, with fans across the nation plastering 10hana everywhere – a mix of #10, his jersey number, and “ohana,” the Hawaiian word for family.

“I’m truly honored to be a finalist for this prestigious award,” said Milton. “Looking through the list of past winners and finalists is awe-inspiring. To be mentioned in the same breath as some of those incredible athletes is humbling. Thank you to the Amateur Athletics Union and thanks to Knight Nation and fans everywhere who voted for me. I’m very much looking forward to taking part in the ceremony in New York.”

The AAU Sullivan Award has been presented annually since 1930 to the most outstanding amateur athlete in the United States, including famed Olympians Michelle Kwan (2001), Michael Phelps (2003), Paul Hamm (2004) and Shawn Johnson (2008); University of Tennessee quarterback Peyton Manning (1997), Penn State guard John Urschel (2013); 200m backstroke world record holder Missy Franklin (2012) and University of Wisconsin setter Lauren Carlini (2016).

“I am amazed every year at the caliber of these athletes. It is an honor, and I am proud to have such remarkable athletes representing finalists for this year’s AAU James E. Sullivan Award,” said Dr. Roger J. Goudy, President and CEO of the AAU. “The AAU is the largest multi-sport organization in the world, so we are delighted to provide a venue for this elite class of finalists to compete for the title of top amateur athlete.”

Voting for the award is open to the public at Finalist voting is open and will close on Friday, March 22 at 11:59 p.m. The winner will be announced at the AAU James E. Sullivan Award Ceremony on Tuesday, April 16 at the New York Athletic Club in Manhattan. This year’s event will be hosted by 1981 AAU Sullivan Award winner Carl Lewis.