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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat


Senior awards: 2012 graduating athletes

With the college careers of many Arizona athletes coming to an end this season, the Daily Wildcat staff decided to take a trip back to high school and vote on senior awards for the 2012 graduating athletes. Here’s a look at what we came up with:

Hardest Worker:

Shanita Arnold | Women’s Basketball

Times were tough for the Arizona women’s basketball team this season. Following a 11-1 start, the Wildcats won just four more games — while losing 17, 14 of which were conference games. There weren’t many bright spots for the Wildcats, but fans and the coaching staff can look back on the season and career of point guard Shanita Arnold with a smile. Arnold began her basketball career in her home state of Arkansas before transferring as a sophomore.

Since she became the floor general for Arizona, Arnold has put up steady and impressive numbers despite her 5-foot-5 stature. In two seasons at Arizona, Arnold started 60 of the 63 games she played in. In her final season, she averaged 4.53 assists per game, good enough for third in the Pac-12. Arnold was not selected in the most recent WNBA draft.

— Cameron Moon

Best Nickname:

David Douglas | Football

Whatever the reason may be, David Douglas goes by the name “Do-Do.” The nickname most likely comes from the fact that both his first and last name start with the letter D, but regardless of the origin, the former UA receiver has been called this since his underclassmen years at Arizona. The McKinney, Texas, native will sign on with the New York Giants as an undrafted free agent, and we’ll see if that nickname sticks with his new teammates.

— Mike Schmitz

Best Pro:

Juron Criner | Football

At 6-foot-2 and 224 pounds, Criner has the physicality to be a top-10 wide receiver in the NFL. It’s now a question of whether or not he can get his quickness off the line up to par. In his four dominant years, two of which were spent as the Wildcats’ No. 1 receiver, Criner has shown time and time again his ability to bring down the ball. Despite not meeting fan expectations in the 2012 NFL Draft, he should be as productive as, if not more than, first-round picks Michael Floyd and A.J. Johnson next season.

— Dan Kohler

Most Successful (Non-athlete):

David Roberts | Football

David Roberts was one of the UA’s most unheralded receivers over the past two seasons. It seemed like whenever the Wildcats needed a gritty play to move the chains or to pick up a big block, Roberts would come through. But Roberts didn’t need attention for being a spectacular playmaker — he’ll do just fine with his degree in aerospace engineering. Roberts is a sharp guy, and he often poses ponderous questions regarding government, engineering and business on his Twitter page. The 6-foot receiver likely could have pursued a career in football if he wanted, but he’ll be all right without the game.

— Alex Williams

Best Non-starter:

Brendon Lavender | Basketball

There are few players on the court that could change the game like Brendon Lavender. In the 2011-12 season, the 3-point specialist was deadly accurate.

The senior registered 191 points this season, and 165 of them were scored beyond the arc. But it wasn’t just his ability to shoot that helped the Wildcats — it was the way he changed the flow of the game and helped his teammates get into an offensive rhythm that earned him the title of best-non starter.

— Nicole Dimtsios

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