May 24, 2012
WALNUT CREEK, Calif. - Rob Munn earned the Pac-12's men's rowing Athlete of the Year award, highlighting a banner day for the undefeated Washington crew program as postseason awards were announced Thursday.
The senior from Redmond, Wash., has been a season-long fixture in the Husky varsity eight boat that has won each of their races by open-water margins, including a recent victory at the Pac-12 Championships. It's the first time since Heath Allen in 2008 a Washington oarsman has been named the league's top rower.
Munn has put together an impressive resume during his time at UW. He won a gold medal at the U-23 World Championships last summer in Amsterdam, and is considered a candidate to row at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. The 6-5 Munn also has also been a part of three IRA gold medal-winning boats and has yet to lose a collegiate race.
Michael Callahan was tabbed the conference's Coach of the Year. It marks the third year in a row (and fourth in the past five years) Callahan has won the award as the 1996 graduate of UW continues his remarkable run of success since taking over the program in 2008. In this short timeframe, Callahan has won two National Championships and four conference titles. The Huskies are gearing up for another championship run next weekend on the Cooper River in Cherry Hill, N.J., which begins on May 31.
Three additional Huskies captured Pac-12 All-Conference awards. Joining Munn on the list were junior Alex Bunkers, senior coxswain Sam Ojserkis and junior Mijo Rudelj. It was the first-such honors for the trio, who have been instrumental components in the Husky V8+. Rudelj is a newcomer to Washington's top boat, which had to replace the graduation of a handful of veterans following last year's run to the National Championship at IRAs. Ojserkis is back in his role as coxswain of the V8 for the second straight year, and following graduation will head off to Cambridge to study business and train with the university's storied rowing program. Bunkers, who competed with Munn at U-23's last summer, is in his second full season in the varsity.
Members of the All-Conference rowing teams are based upon each institution's finish in the varsity eight championship race at the Pac-12 Championships. The conference champion provides four members of the All-Conference team, the Pac-10 second-place crew provides three members, and the Pac-12 third-place finisher provides two. All other participating Conference crews receive one selection each.