A week-long series on Ohio State’s Big Ten Medal of Honor Finalists begins today with a feature on Steven Moneke. The senior tennis player, a two-time ITA All-American, is a three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection as an international business major.

In 2005, Steven Moneke made the long trip from Alten-Busick, Germany, to set up residence in Columbus, to further his tennis career and what a career it has been. The two-time Intercollegiate Tennis Association All-American is the Ohio State all-time career singles wins leader. Moneke passed Vince Ng, a letterwinner from 1999-2003, who compiled 132 victories after defeating Joshua Graves of Northwestern April 17. He enters the NCAA Round of 16 this weekend with 138 career singles wins to his credit. In typical Moneke fashion, the three-time All-Big Ten selection showed nothing but modesty after breaking the record.

“I’m honored to be in company with Vince Ng, he’s a legend in our program. I couldn’t asked for anything better than breaking the record at home in my last couple of matches in Columbus. It’s a great feeling.”

Moneke, the nation’s top ranked singles player from Jan. 11, 2007-Feb. 21, 2007, has been instrumental in guiding the Buckeyes to four-consecutive Big Ten regular-season and tournament championships. In other words, in his four-year career, Moneke has no concept of not winning a conference championship.

A three-time Academic All-Big Ten recipient, Moneke has been honored as an Ohio State Scholar-Athlete four times. He is on track to graduate in Spring 2010 and will embark on a career in professional tennis.

The Big Ten Conference Medal of Honor
In 1914 the Conference established a Medal of Honor to be awarded annually at each member institution to a student in the graduating class.  An additional award for the top female was instituted in 1982.  Chosen by the Athletic Council, the winners of this most prestigious award are the male and female senior student-athletes who have attained the greatest proficiency in both academics and athletics. This honor includes a $5,000 post-graduate scholarship which can be used at an institution of the recipient’s choice.

Ohio State’s men’s and women’s Big Ten Medal of Honor recipients will be announced at the 2009 OSU Scholar-Athlete Dinner at the Columbus Convention Center Wednesday, May 20.

With Honor series:
Day 1: Steven Moneke, men’s tennis and Kim Reeder, softball
Day 2: James Laurinaitis, football and Jayme DeLancy, synchronized swimming
Day 3: Alyssa Meyer, women’s gymnastics and Jake Bateman, men’s gymnastics