WALLA WALLA, Wash. -- Bradley Bowen, a senior captain on the men's soccer team and a Truman Scholar, is the 2005 recipient of the R.V. Borleske Trophy, which is presented annually to the top male athlete at Whitman College.
The trophy, which is awarded by a vote of the Whitman coaching staff, recognizes athletic ability and accomplishments, leadership and sportsmanship qualities, and contributions to the campus as a whole.
Bowen is the third member of the men's soccer team to win the Borleske Trophy in the past three years. Travis Extrom, a goalkeeper, won the trophy in 2003, and defender Tyler Chisholm shared the trophy in 2004 with Sam Spiegel, a member of that year's Northwest Conference champion men's tennis team.
"Bradley is the epitome of a team leader," men's soccer Mike Washington said. "We were in need of some true team leadership this past year, and Bradley gave us that, day after day.
Normally a midfielder, Bowen switched to defense for his senior season. "He played out of position all season to help us where we needed it most," Washington said. "His unselfishness was greatly appreciated by me and his teammates."
Bowen scored the game-winning goal in Whitman's 1-0 victory over Northwest College early last fall. He also contributed an assist to a 2-1 victory over Lawrence University.
A starter throughout most of his four seasons at Whitman, Bowen is leaving the men's soccer program in better shape than he found it, Washington said. "He is a fine young man with a great off-the-field future."
Bowen and senior teammate Brian Stater, also a defender, were two of 11 players named last fall to the Academic All-District First Team in the College Division of District VIII. That district includes all NAIA and NCAA Div. II and Div. III schools in the states of Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Alaska, Hawaii, California, Utah, Nevada and Arizona, as well as British Columbia.
Last spring, Bowen was one of about 80 college juniors in the U.S. who received a Harry S Truman Scholarship for post-graduate studies. After his Whitman graduation later this month, he will move to Washington, D.C., to work this summer in the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Labor. He plans to attend law school in the immediate future, focusing on public interest and civil right litigation. Last summer, he worked in the Washington, D.C., office of U.S. Sen. Max Baucus.
Bowen is completing his second one-year term as president of the student government at Whitman. He is the first student body president at Whitman to serve two consecutive terms. He also served two terms as president of the Whitman Civil Liberties Union, and he was one of two students who served on a college search committee that helped select Whitman's new president.
Bowen, a graduate of Bozeman (Mont.) High School, is double majoring in politics and rhetoric & film studies. He is the son of David and Magdalena Bowen of Bozeman.
The Borleske Trophy honors Raymond V. Borleske, who achieved legendary status as an athlete and later as a coach at Whitman during the first half of the 20th century. He starred on Whitman's football and baseball teams, and he was the first football player from the Northwest to be recognized by Walter Camp's Spaulding Football Guide. After graduating from Whitman and earning a law degree, Borleske returned to campus in 1915 to begin a coaching career that continued until 1947.