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Big Ten CommunicationsPublished: 11/1/2023, Last updated: 11/2/2023
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Michigan, Michigan State, and Wisconsin Earn Big Ten Conference Cross Country Postseason Awards

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ROSEMONT, ILL. – The Big Ten Conference announced the first of its postseason cross country awards on Wednesday. Michigan’s Lani Bloom was selected as the women’s Freshman of the Year, while Michigan State’s Lisa Breznau was unanimously voted as the women’s Coach of the Year. Wisconsin swept the men’s awards, with Micah Wilson named the men’s Freshman of the Year, and Mick Byrne unanimously chosen as the men’s Big Ten Coach of the Year.

Bloom is the thirteenth Michigan women’s student-athlete to earn Big Ten Freshman of the Year honors. Bloom claimed second-team All-Big Ten honors, finishing 12th at the Big Ten Championships, completing the 6k in 21:35.9.

Breznau led the Spartans to their fourth title in the last five years, earning a low 46 points to beat host Wisconsin by 35 points. Breznau has now earned her third Big Ten Coach of the Year award (2020, 22), and is joining her predecessor, Walt Drenth (2019) as the only MSU coaches to receive the honor.

Wilson is the third Badger in five years to earn Big Ten Freshman of the Year honors, following Adam Spencer in 2022. Wilson claimed first-team All-Big Ten honors after placing 10th at the Big Ten Championships, completing the 8k race in 24:39.0.

Byrne guided Wisconsin to its 13th Big Ten title since becoming the head coach in 2008, while leading the Badgers to the 54th Big Ten Championship in program history. He now holds the conference record for championships after this year. Byrne is also a 13-time Big Ten Coach of the Year, the most coaching honors in Big Ten men’s cross country history.

The Big Ten also recognizes the Sportsmanship Award honorees from each institution. The student-athletes chosen are individuals who have set themselves apart through hard work, sportsmanship and honorable behavior. These student-athletes must also be in good academic standing and demonstrate good citizenship outside of the sports setting. The list of honorees can be found below.

The Big Ten Athletes of the Year will be announced following the NCAA Championships, which will be held Nov. 19 at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Okla.

Men’s Coach of the Year:


Women’s Coach of the Year:


Men’s Freshman of the Year:

Micah Wilson, Wisconsin

Women’s Freshman of the Year:

Lani Bloom, Michigan

Big Ten Sportsmanship Award Honorees:


Jack Roberts, Illinois

Martin Segurola, Indiana

Brayden Burnett, Iowa

Caleb Jarema, Michigan

Josh Smith, Michigan State

Leo Goodman, Minnesota

Jerry Jorgenson, Nebraska

Keegan Freyhof, Ohio State

Brian DiCola, Penn State

Caleb Williams, Purdue

Chris Hill, Rutgers

Josh Truchon, Wisconsin


Halle Hill, Illinois

Tori Schmidt, Indiana

Aleah Tenpas, Iowa

Katie Altieri, Maryland

Samantha Hastie, Michigan

Abbey Lee, Michigan State

Taylor Kreitinger, Minnesota

Emma Ralston, Nebraska

Kalea Bartolotto, Northwestern

Andrea Kuhn, Ohio State

Claire Zubey, Penn State

Caroline Jordan, Purdue

Rylee Ferretti, Rutgers

Vivian Hacker, Wisconsin

Unanimous selection listed in ALL CAPS