From Case Western Reserve University Athletics
Recent Case Western Reserve University graduate and former men's tennis player C.J. Krimbill received the NCAA Today's Top 10 Award, recognizing former student-athletes for their successes on the field, in the classroom and in the community at the Honors Celebration during the NCAA Convention in Nashville, Tennessee on Wednesday night.
Krimbill is the first athlete in Case Western Reserve University history to win the honor, one of the most prestigious awards combining athletics, academics and community service that can be presented to an NCAA athlete. The NCAA Today's Top 10 Award has been presented annually since 1973, with past winners including numerous student-athletes that would go on to become household names, such as Archie Griffin, John Elway, Steve Young, Cheryl Miller, David Robinson, and Drew Brees, among others.
In addition, Krimbill is the first men's tennis player ever to be selected to win the award (among all three NCAA divisions), and the first male athlete from the University Athletic Association to claim the honor.
He was one of three NCAA Division III Athletes selected as a Today's Top 10 Awardee this year, along with Emory University's Elizabeth Aronoff and Logan Andryk of the Milwaukee School of Engineering. Other honorees include current Dallas Cowboy and former Mississippi State quarterback Dak Prescott, Kendall Coyne of Northeastern, Taylor Ellis-Watson of Arkansas, Nicole Hensley of Lindenwood, Haylie McCleney of Alabama, Tiffany Mitchell of South Carolina and Jason Vander Laan of Ferris State.
Krimbill graduated from Case Western Reserve in May as the most accomplished tennis player in the program's history. In 2016, he teamed with senior Louis Stuerke to reach the semifinals of the NCAA Division III Doubles Championships, as the duo ended the year ranked third in Division III. He also made it to the round of 16 of the NCAA singles draw, and was ranked 11th in the final Oracle/ ITA National Poll. Krimbill set school single-season records for singles and doubles wins during the year, going 30-6 individually and 33-6 in doubles play.
Krimbill earned All-American honors for his singles and doubles play during the year, and ended his career as a four-time singles All-American and a three-time doubles All-American. He was the 2015 UAA Most Valuable Player, and is the only player in CWRU history to earn All-UAA singles recognition all four years of his career, including a second team berth this year. He is a three-time All-UAA doubles honoree as well, claiming a spot on the first team with Stuerke earlier this season, while his efforts helped lead the Spartans to the only three NCAA Team Championship berths in the program's history. Krimbill finished his career with as the program's all-time leader in singles (107-31) and doubles (123-30) wins and is one of just two players in UAA history with at least 200 combined career wins.
Krimbill was a standout academically as well during his time at CWRU, graduating in 2016 with a 3.94 cumulative grade point average as a Chemical Engineering major. He received an NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship in July, and was named to the CoSIDA Academic All-America First Team last season, the second Academic All-America honor of his career. Krimbill was a three-time UAA Presidents Scholar-Athlete Team selection as well.
Krimbill was also an active member of the community, participating in a number of service projects, including working with the Urban Garden Development, volunteering as a tutor in both mathematics and tennis, and taking a mission trip to Germany in 2016. Since his graduation in May, he has worked as a Project Engineer at Avery-Dennison in Cleveland.
The NCAA Honors Committee, which selects the honorees, is comprised of representatives from member schools and conferences, as well as nationally distinguished former college athletes. Before 2013, the award recognized eight student-athletes and was known as Today's Top VIII. The NCAA Honors Committee expanded the award to include 10 honorees to recognize the growing number of college athletes, sports and championship opportunities.