Olivet's Baker Receives 2018 Albert L. Deal Male Scholar Athlete Award

Olivet's Baker Receives 2018 Albert L. Deal Male Scholar Athlete Award

Freeland, Mich. -- Olivet College's Bruce Baker has been selected as the recipient of the 2018 Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association's Albert L. Deal Male Scholar-Athlete Award winner.

"We are privileged to acknowledge Bruce Baker as the 2018 Albert L. Deal Scholar-Athlete Award winner," said Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association Commissioner Penny Allen-Cook. "In a field of incredible nominations, Bruce demonstrated academic, athletic, and character excellence that lifted him to the top of the list. Over his collegiate career, Bruce proved determination and integrity that define what it means to be the Deal Award recipient."

The Albert L. Deal Male Scholar-Athlete Award recognizes a senior male student-athlete from a MIAA member college who has excelled in academics and athletics while displaying outstanding leadership qualities. The award is named in honor of Albert L. Deal, who served as MIAA commissioner from 1971 to 1991.

Baker is the first Olivet student-athlete since 2012 to receive the Deal Award, and is the fourth all-time since the award's inception in 2004. 

In the classroom, Baker graduated in May with a degree in Business Administration and a minor in Journalism and Mass Communication with a grade-point average of 3.80 to graduate Magna Cum Laude. The 2017-18 Walter B. Sprandel Male Student-Athlete of the Year for Olivet College, Baker was an eight-time Dean's List honoree.

A 12-time varsity letter in cross country, indoor track and field, and outdoor track and field, Baker capped his collegiate competition career as the 2018 MIAA Champion in the 10,000m Run with an Olivet-record time of 32:06.51. Baker was a two-time MIAA Athlete of the Week during his cross country running career and a second-team All-MIAA honoree in 2016. Baker's indoor track and field career included a runner-up finish in the 5,000m run at the 2018 MIAA Indoor Championships.

Active in the community, Baker was the Olivet College Student-Athlete Advisory Committee Vice President and was the president of the Olivet College chapter of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes. Baker also participated in the Olivet College choir, the Global Citizens Honor program, was a writer for the Olivet Echo, and was a high school mentor for Campus Life in his hometown of Charlotte, Mich.

Baker will continue having an impact on the Olivet College campus this fall, where he has accepted a position as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator for the Olivet cross country and track and field programs.


Albert L. Deal Male Scholar-Athlete Award winners


Tim Avery, Calvin


Peter Boumgarden, Calvin


Travis Sleight, Olivet


Josh Brehm, Alma


Dustin Meisner, Olivet


Jed Christiansen, Calvin


Brandon Luczak, Kalamazoo


Eric Watt, Trine


Mike Harden, Olivet


Cory Schmidt, Hope


Mark Ghafari, Kalamazoo


Will Guedes, Kalamazoo


Boone Marois, Hope


Harrison Blackledge, Hope


Bruce Baker, Olivet