BRENTWOOD, Tenn. – Heather Butler, a senior guard on the University of Tennessee at Martin women’s basketball team, has been honored as a prestigious Ohio Valley Conference Scholar-Athlete for the 2012-13 academic year.
The accolade is the highest individual honor that can be earned by an OVC student-athlete. The award is given annually to three female and three male student-athletes of junior or senior status for their leadership qualities, as well as their accomplishments in both the classroom and athletic arena.
Butler is just the 15th UT Martin student-athlete and second women’s basketball player (Kelly Pendleton, 2001-02) to bring home the award. Also earning the award was Belmont’s Chase Brookshire (baseball), Murray State’s Delaney Howson (golf), Southeast Missouri’s Rebekah Lawson (cross country/track and field), Tennessee Tech’s Dennis Ogbe (basketball) and Austin Peay’s Ben Stansfield (football).
“To be highlighted as one of three female athletes out of the entire conference is a special accomplishment in Heather’s career,” Skyhawk head coach Kevin McMillan said. “We all have seen how remarkable she is on the court over the past three seasons and this award shows she is just as valuable in the classroom and with her community service as well. I couldn’t be more proud of Heather.”
A Medina, Tenn. native, Butler has helped guide UT Martin to 63 victories and three consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances since 2010.
Butler is the program’s all-time leading scorer with 2,111 points after just three seasons. A three-time All-OVC first teamer and 2012 OVC Tournament Most Valuable Player, she currently holds an NCAA record with 80 consecutive games of making at least one 3-pointer.
After she was the nation’s leading freshman scorer (19.1 points per game) in 2010-11, Butler ranked fourth in the nation in scoring (23.8 points per game) as a sophomore. Last season, she finished sixth nationally with 22.4 points per game and concluded her spectacular junior campaign with 37 points against eventual Final Four participant Notre Dame – which ranked as the highest individual scoring game in the 2013 NCAA Tournament.
In the classroom, Butler accounts for a 3.83 Grade Point Average as a health and human performance major (K-12 licensure). A three-time OVC Commissioner’s Honor Roll honoree, she also is a multi-year selection to the UT Martin Chancellor’s Honor Roll.
Butler is also a member of the College of Education, Health and Behavioral Sciences Student Ambassadors organization, the UT Martin Athletics Board and the UT Martin SHAPE Club. She is also active with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, the Elementary School Reading Program and the Can Caravan Food Drive as well as serving as a DARE program graduation speaker among many other activities.