Conner Burt, Ben Sippola Named Academic All-America

INDIANAPOLIS, IND. -- Butler seniors Conner Burt and Ben Sippola, who have helped lead the Bulldogs to the 2010 NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Tournament, have been named first team on the 2010 ESPN University Division Academic All-America Team, chosen by CoSIDA (College Sports Information Directors of America).  The two were among 11 players named to the national honor squad’s first team.

Burt, who earned first team Academic All-America recognition for the second consecutive year, further was runner-up to Kofi Sarkodie of Akron in the balloting for University Division Academic All-America of the Year.  Sippola was third in the voting.

Both players have started all 19 matches for the No. 5-ranked Bulldogs.  Butler, one of just two unbeaten teams in the NCAA Division I, boasts a 16-0-3 record heading into the 2010 NCAA Division I Men’s Soccer Tournament.  The Bulldogs captured Horizon League regular season and tournament championships.

Burt, who has started every match of his Butler career, has helped Butler rank as one of the top defensive teams in the nation.  Butler enters the national tournament ranked sixth in the NCAA Division I in team goals against average (0.5).  The Bulldogs led the Horizon League in fewest goals allowed (10).  Burt was named second team All-Horizon League as a defender for the second consecutive year.

The Butler defender boasts a 3.96 grade point average as an economics major.  He’s a two-time CoSIDA Academic All-District V pick, has been selected to the Horizon League Academic All-League Team for two straight years and was named to the 2009-10 NSCAA Scholar All-North/Central Region Team.

Sippola, Butler’s leading scorer, was named Horizon League Player of the Year and Horizon League Offensive Player of the Year this season.  The first team All-League selection also was named Most Valuable Player of the 2010 Horizon League Men’s Soccer Championship.  He leads the Bulldogs with eight goals and nine assists.

Majoring in English Literature, Sippola has a 3.72 grade point average.  He’s been named to the CoSIDA Academic All-District V Team, the Horizon League Academic All-League Team and the 2009-10 NSCAA Scholar All-North/Central Region Team.  He was named Horizon League Scholar-Athlete of the Month for September.

Butler will begin play in the NCAA Men’s Soccer Tournament at home on Sunday, Nov. 21.  The Bulldogs will host the winner of a first round match between Oakland and Michigan State at 1 p.m. (ET).