CIF Names Scholar-Athletes of Year

SACRAMENTO, CALIF. — Tulare Union High’s Barrett Nunley from Tulare Union High School and Eleanor Wikstrom from Skyline High School were selected as the 2020 CIF Scholar-Athletes of the Year. Since 1982, the scholarship award identifies student-athletes who excel in the classroom, athletics, and are strong contributors to their schools and communities.

“Our CIF scholar-athletes embody the principles of education-based athletics,” said CIF Executive Director Ron Nocetti. “On behalf of the entire CIF family, I congratulate Eleanor, Barrett, and all of our scholar-athletes. They are certainly examples of all that is positive during these challenging times.”

Nunley and Wikstrom will each receive a $5,000 scholarship award. They were selected from a pool of 374 candidates representing 1,606 CIF member schools and more than 830,000 student-athletes statewide.

Additionally, 20 CIF Section winners earned a $1,000 scholarship award. (See below for complete list.)

Barrett ‘Bear’ Nunley
Tulare Union High School (Central Section)

Nunley is a three-sport athlete at Tulare Union High School participating in football, golf, and wrestling, while also serving as captain of the football and wrestling teams the past three years. He has been involved in student government since his freshman year, is a four- year Character Counts! award winner and is also a member of the National Honors Society, FFA, and CSF. Additionally, he has been involved in community service helping the underprivileged in the Tulare community, including volunteer tutoring and ‘Soled out for Kids.’

“As my high school career is coming to a close, some of my fondest memories center around the experiences and relationships I have had while playing sports,” states Nunley. “The brotherhood and bonds I have made with my teammates are more valuable than any win or championship. These memories will forever be what high school athletics means to me.”

“I have never had the opportunity in my 37 years of coaching to coach such an outstanding young man who embodies everything we as coaches strive to have our student-athletes become,” praised Tulare Co-Head Football Coach and Avid Instructor Marty Martin.

Tulare Athletic Director Diana Nalbandian-Hatton adds, “Barrett as a student-athlete encompasses the passion, dedication, hard work and sportsmanship the CIF strives to instill in its student-athletes.”

More on Barrett: GPA 4.00; College: UCLA; Career Interest: Real Estate Development and Acquisition; College Major: Business Administration ; Primary Sport: Football.

Eleanor Wikstrom
Skyline High School (Oakland Section)

Wikstrom is a four-year member of the cross country and track teams at Skyline High School and is a National Merit semifinalist and National AP Scholar. She is involved in many extracurricular clubs throughout Skyline and is co-founder and President for the Oakland Students for Public Education, a student lobby group that advocates on behalf of K-12 public education in California. Additionally, Wikstrom won first place in the MLK Oratorical Festival four times and was the Oakland Youth Vice Poet Laureate in 2019.

“…My character is the product of multiple parts – my family, my school, my city, and beyond,” states Wikstrom. “I know that the deep gratitude which I hold for my community – and the trustworthiness fairness, caring, respect, responsibility, and citizenship which it teaches me – is something that will shape my actions forever.”

“Eleanor is hardworking and diligent, community-driven and compassionate, as well as exceptionally intelligent and motivated,” praised Skyline Assistant Principal Justin Anderson. “The word resiliency comes to mind when thinking of Eleanor, not just her resiliency for her own path, but supporting others to be resilient on theirs.”

Skyline Head Cross Country and Track & Field Coach Sean Kohles adds: “Eleanor is a very unique individual. She inspires and challenges others to be better. She is empathetic, uplifting, fair, stern, and able to see the big picture.”

More on Eleanor: GPA 4.00; College: Harvard; Career Interest: United Nations (diplomacy, education policy, public health, medical research); College Major: Cognitive Science, International Relations; Primary Sports: Cross Country and Track.

2020 CIF Scholar-Athlete SECTION Winners

Central Section — Jacqueline Maze, Tulare Union High School & Bryson Job, Boron High School.
Central Coast Section — Alden Standley, Sacred Heart Cathedral (San Francisco) & Evan Franco, Branham High School (San Jose).
Los Angeles City Section — Tracey Truong, Abraham Lincoln High School & Nathanael Davis, University Senior Charter School.
North Coast Section — Emma Casey, Las Lomas High School (Walnut Creek) & Zavier Annis, St. Joseph Notre Dame (Alameda).
Northern Section — Natalie Osborne, Fall River High School (McArthur) & Calvin Thackeray, Etna High School.
Oakland Section — Carla Franco-Felix, Coliseum College Prep Academy & David Robles, Coliseum College Prep Academy
Sac-Joaquin Section — Brooke Giorgi, Whitney High School (Rocklin) & John Kroeger, River Valley High School (Yuba City).
San Diego Section — Emma Rens, Academy of Our Lady of Peace (San Diego) & Logan Schmidt, Monte Vista High School (Spring Valley).
San Francisco Section — Elena Rodriguez, Mission High School & Adam Chirackal, Raoul Wallenberg High School.
Southern Section — Ella Whitehouse, Woodcrest Christian High School (Riverside) & Cole Sawires Yager, Great Oak High School (Temecula).

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  1. Eugene Chung
    Posted May 26, 2020 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    I assume those on the CIF Scholar AOY awards list are seniors. How does a student-athlete get nominated for consideration? What are the dates for nomination?

    • Mark Tennis
      Posted May 26, 2020 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

      The state honorees come through the sections and yes they are all seniors.
      Contact the section office you are in for more details.

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