PR Newswire, July 31, 2002

AUSTIN, Texas -- Honoring the nation's elite high school athletes for more than 17 years, Gatorade(R) Thirst Quencher, in partnership with Scholastic Coach & Athletic Director magazine, today announced Brendan Christian of Reagan High School as the 2002 Gatorade National High School Boys' Track & Field Player of the Year. The award, which also factors in academic achievements and overall character, distinguishes Brendan as the nation's best high school male track & field athlete.

Brendan won the Texas Class 4A state and Region IV championships in the 100-meter dash and the 200-meter dash this year. He also won 100-meter and 200-meter titles at the National Golden West Track and Field Championships. "Brendan is quiet and reserved, you would not know he is a world class sprinter if you just met him," said coach Paul Darby. "He is extremely fast and very smooth. He has tremendous range from the 400-meter dash on down."

Off the track, Brendan graduated with a 3.4 GPA and will attend the University of Texas next year with the 2002 Gatorade Girls' Track & Field Player of the Year, Sanya Richards, and the 2001 Gatorade Girls' Track & Field Player of the Year, Ychlindria Spears.

The 2002 Gatorade National High School Track & Field Player of the Year selection was made by the Gatorade National Advisory Board, comprised of 10 national and regional sports journalists, who collected nominations from all over the country. Brendan was selected from more than 493,000 high school male track & field athletes nationwide.

"We believe true success in high school athletics is predicated on more than just skill," said Gatorade Vice President of Sports Marketing Tom Fox. "While Gatorade athletes are the best in their sports, being a winner also means having character, being a leader, and caring as much about your test scores as your game scores. Brendan Christian is a shining example of the positive role sports can play in a teenager's life."

Brendan joins an outstanding list of past Gatorade National High School Track & Field Players of the Year:

  Year     Name               High School/Hometown       Status
  2001     Alan Webb          South Lakes, Reston, VA    University of
                                                          Michigan
  2000     Donald Sage, Jr.   York, Elmhurst, IL         Stanford
  1999     Jacob Freeman      Bishop, Hendricken, RI     Manhattan College
  1998     Jon Stevens        Mission San Jose,          Stanford
                               Fremont, CA
  1997     Sharif Karie       West Springfield,          University of
                               Springfield, VA            Arkansas
  1996     Michael Granville  Bell Gardens,              UCLA
                              Bell Gardens, CA
  1995     Michael Stember    Jesuit, Carmichael, CA     Stanford
  1994     Andre Scott        Seminole, Seminole, FL     Auburn
  1993     Charles Mitchell   Waco, Waco, TX             Mississippi State
                                                          Graduate
  1992     Sheddric Fields    South Oak Cliff,           Univ. of Houston
                               Dallas, TX                 Graduate
  1991     Bryan Bronson      Jasper, Jasper, TX         Rice University
                                                          Graduate
  1990     Brent Noon         Fallbrook, Fallbrook, CA   Univ. of Georgia
                                                          Graduate
  1989     Dion Bentley       Penn Hills,                Univ. of Florida
                               Pittsburgh, PA             Graduate
  1988     Art Skipper Jr.    Sandy, Sandy, OR           Univ. of Oregon
                                                          Graduate
  1987     Kamy Keshmiri      Reno, Reno, NV             Univ. of Nevada
                                                          Graduate
  1986     Eric Mastalir      Jesuit, Carmichael, CA     Stanford University
                                                          Graduate



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