Academic All-American x 4

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Dec. 9, 2014

Mike Sadler (AES ’13) is MSU’s first four-time Academic All-American

Mike Sadler (AES ’13) is living proof that the College of Engineering Applied Engineering Sciences program offers a strong academic preparation."It is a tremendous honor to be the first four-time Academic All-American in the history of MSU Athletics." -- Mike Sadler (AES '13) with Coach Mark Dantonio.

Sadler, a fifth-year senior punter on the Spartan football team, has been named to the 2014 Capital One Division I Academic All-America First Team, as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).

He becomes the first student-athlete in Michigan State history to be named an Academic All-American four consecutive times.

“It is a tremendous honor to be the first four-time Academic All American in the history of MSU Athletics,” Sadler said. “There have been a number of brilliant student athletes that have passed through MSU on their lifelong journey, and to accomplish this feat is both historic and humbling. I hope that the platform that I have been given serves to inspire others to achieve excellence both in the academic arena and in other walks of life.”

Sadler said that while balancing academics and athletics is difficult, the task is easier when surrounded by highly motivated and encouraging people.

“I was fortunate to be surrounded with these types of people during my time in the College of Engineering,” he explained. “The demanding curriculum is not for the faint of heart. I was able to succeed thanks to faculty who were willing to go out of their way to not only ensure that students learned the material from their respective classes, but also to make sure that their students were prepared for life moving forward.

“I can confidently say that my engineering background has prepared me to do well in any situation that I could be faced with. This most recent academic honor is merely a reflection of some of the many lessons that I have learned from my time in East Lansing,” he added.

Sadler earned first-team honors in 2013 and second-team accolades in 2011 and 2012. He is just the third Spartan (Dean Altobelli, 1985-86; Steve Wasylk, 1992-93) and 34th Big Ten football player to earn first-team Academic All-America honors twice.

A member of the 2014 National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete Class, Sadler was one of 17 finalists for the William V. Campbell Trophy, which is given to the nation's top scholar-athlete. The award, considered the "Academic Heisman," was presented to Duke linebacker David Helton during ceremonies Dec. 9 at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City. Read more about the ceremony in New York in the Detroit Free Press:

A native of Grand Rapids, Sadler graduated with a bachelor's degree in applied engineering sciences in May 2013 with a 3.97 grade-point average. He's currently pursuing a master's degree in public policy and has a 3.59 graduate GPA.

Sadler is also a three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection (2011-13) and a two-time Big Ten Distinguished Scholar (2012-13). He was presented the scholar-athlete award at the 2013 and 2014 Spartan Academic Excellence Gala for having the highest GPA on the team for players who have reached at least junior academic status.

Sadler also has earned All-America status on the field, as he was named a first-team All-American in 2013 by and An honorable mention All-Big Ten selection this season, Sadler ranks sixth in the Big Ten with his 41.3-yard punting average, including 14 punts placed inside the 20. He ranks second in MSU history in punts (265) and punting yards (11,188) and sixth in punting average (42.2 yards).

To be eligible for the Academic All-America Team, a student-athlete must be a starter or important reserve with at least a 3.3 cumulative grade-point average (on a 4.0 scale) for his career. He also must have reached sophomore athletic and academic standing.


"I was able to succeed thanks to faculty who were willing to go out of their way ... and make sure their students were prepared for life moving forward."