Ohio State heavyweight wrestler Kyle Snyder is one of the top athletes in the word. In the past year, he won an Olympic gold medal in Rio de Janeiro, dominated the stacked Yarygin tournament in Russia, and repeated as Big Ten and NCAA wrestling championship.
Wednesday, he collected the Jesse Owens Male Athlete of the Year from the Big Ten. He is the first Buckeye athlete to win the award since wrestler Logan Stieber in 2014-15.
"I'm honored to win this incredible award, especially because of what its namesake, Jesse Owens, means to the Big Ten and specifically Ohio State," Snyder said in a statement.
"To be in the company of the many exceptional student-athletes who have earned this award in the past is humbling. I could not have achieved any of my success without the constant help and encouragement of my family, coaches, teammates and friends. I love competing for Ohio State and representing my country."
Snyder became the youngest wrestler in United States history (20-years-old) and first active Ohio State athlete to win Olympic gold in 92 years.
He followed it up with a 17-0 campaign at Ohio State that culminated in a conference and national championship over Wisconsin's Connor Medbery, despite giving up 60 pounds to the massive Badger.
Next up: a potential ESPY for “Best Male Olympic Athlete.”
First awarded in 1982, Snyder becomes the fifth Buckeye to win the Jesse Owens Athlete of the Year award, joining Eddie George (football), Blaine Wilson (gymnastics), Evan Turner (basketball) and Logan Stieber.
|1982||Jim Spivey||Indiana||Track and Field/Cross Country|
|1984||Sunder Nix||Indiana||Track and Field|
|1991||Mike Barrowman||Michigan||Swimming and Diving|
|1995||Tom Dolan||Michigan||Swimming and Diving|
|1996||Eddie George||Ohio State||Football|
|1997||Blaine Wilson||Ohio State||Gymnastics|
|2001||Ryan Miller||Michigan State||Ice Hockey|
|2002||Jordan Leopold||Minnesota||Ice Hockey|
|2005||Luis Vargas||Penn State||Gymnastics|
|2006||Peter Vanderkaay||Michigan||Swimming and Diving|
|2010||Evan Turner||Ohio State||Basketball|
|2011||David Boudia||Purdue||Swimming and Diving|
|2012||Draymond Green||Michigan State||Basketball|
|2013||Derek Drouin||Indiana||Track and Field|
|2014||David Taylor||Penn State||Wrestling|
|2015||Logan Stieber||Ohio State||Wrestling|
|2016||Denzel Valentine||Michigan State||Basketball|
|2017||Kyle Snyder||Ohio State||Wrestling|
[Header video via @JerodNBC4]