Rare Act of Sacrifice Earns AU Wrestler National Award
Anderson University wrestler Anthony DiCarlo was recently
recognized by Conference Carolinas with the league’s sportsmanship award, and
the honors continue to roll in for Anthony.
DiCarlo has been named the 2009 NCAA National Sportsmanship
Award winner, winning the NCAA Division II Sportsmanship Award as well.
Additionally, he was honored at the AT&T National Sportsmanship Awards
in St. Louis on November 21.
“The honor of winning the award was something that was a big
surprise to me, and it is humbling.
It is a huge honor, and I certainly don’t deserve it, but I hope to live
up to it,” DiCarlo said. “I am
very thankful to be able to represent the school, my family, and the wrestling
program in a positive manner.”
Nominees for the NCAA’s Sportsmanship Award exemplify the
good sportsmanship that characterizes the highest level of respect, caring,
fairness, civility, honesty, integrity and responsibility during competition.
“Anthony exhibits every aspect of what sportsmanship
embodies on and off the wrestling mat.
He has always represented our program, as well as Anderson University,
in the best possible manner,” Anderson wrestling coach Dock Kelly said. “I am both blessed and honored to have
had the opportunity to coach Anthony for the past four years.”
DiCarlo represents the finest ideals of sportsmanship, and
these qualities were never more fully displayed than in a match against an
opponent from Central Missouri State University.
Anthony moved up from his normal spot at 141 pounds to the
157 pound weight class, filling the spot of an injured teammate. In a seemingly impossible feat, the
undersized DiCarlo was holding his own in the showdown that would determine the
overall match result.
With 45 seconds remaining in the match, DiCarlo’s opponent
was rendered helpless when his vision became blurry. Needing only one takedown
to secure the victory for himself and the team, Anthony refused to execute any
offensive moves, showing more concern for his opponent’s safety than for
winning the match.
As time expired, the disappointment in losing the match
disappeared, and Anthony’s teammates congratulated him on doing the right
thing. Anthony’s opponent, as well
as the Central Missouri State coaches and other wrestlers, expressed their
respect and admiration for the sportsmanship shown by Anthony.
“I was undersized to be in that weight class, and I was
(making a) comeback. He called
injury time for his eyes and I quit wrestling,” DiCarlo said. “It was one of those matches where
things didn’t go my way and I didn’t win, but if someone is able to see a
demonstration of sportsmanship in it then I’m thankful for that.”
The National Sportsmanship Awards, hosted by the St. Louis
Sports Commission and the Citizenship Through Sports Alliance, celebrates all
that is right in sports by highlighting the most remarkable examples of
sportsmanship. The event will be
broadcast in a 60-minute special by CBS College Sports in December.
Anderson University President Evans P. Whitaker said that
the central concept of the student-athlete is the development of more than
athletic ability and that DiCarlo is the model for what a student athlete
should strive to be.
“We are very proud of Anthony’s honor. I am not surprised that the NCAA would
recognize him as exemplary of the high ideals of sportsmanship. He is a model student-athlete and one
of the finest young men I know,” Whitaker said. “At Anderson, sportsmanship is
a high priority for our coaches, student-athletes and the entire university
community. Anthony clearly lives out that priority, and we are exceedingly
proud of him and the example he sets.”
DiCarlo’s twin brother Nick also received a high honor when
Dr. Whitaker presented him with the President’s Award at last year’s
commencement. The President’s
Award is given to the Anderson University student who exhibits excellence in
all areas during the college career.
University is a comprehensive university affiliated with the South Carolina
Baptist Convention offering bachelors and masters degrees. Anderson is ranked
in the Top Tier (top 25) of colleges and universities in the South, and one of “77 Schools
to Watch in America,”
by U. S. News & World Report.
Anderson has also been named one of “Americas 100 Best College Buys,” Located
in The Upstate region of South Carolina near the foothills of the Appalachians,
Anderson University features a rigorous education in a supportive Christian