June 12, 2013
ANN ARBOR, Mich. -- The University of Michigan men's track and field coaching staff announced the recipients of four team awards for the 2013 season today (Wednesday, June 12). Junior Ali Arastu (Northville, Mich./Northville) was named the team's Most Outstanding Athlete and also received the Spencer Dowdall Outstanding Scholar Award; fifth-year senior Bobby Aprill (Dexter, Mich./Dexter) earned Most Improved honors; and sophomore/freshman Mason Ferlic (St. Paul, Minn./Mounds Park Academy) was tabbed U-M's Most Outstanding Freshman.
Arastu, a tri-captain, finished sixth in the 400-meter dash at the Big Ten Indoor Championships and runner-up in the 400-meter hurdles for the second straight year at the Big Ten Outdoor Championships to earn All-Big Ten second team recognition. He took fourth at the NCAA East Preliminary Rounds in the hurdles and also finished fourth at the NCAA Outdoor Championships, earning All-America first team honors to become the first U-M All-America 400-meter hurdler since 1997. In his first season in Maize and Blue in 2011, he received the team's Most Outstanding Freshman award.
Arastu is majoring in movement science in the School of Kinesiology, where he holds over a 3.7 grade-point average. He is a two-time Academic All-Big Ten and three-time U-M Athletic Academic Achievement honoree.
After a senior year that was plagued by injury, Aprill returned as a fifth-year senior to qualify for the NCAA Indoor Championships, where he finished 14th in the 5,000-meter run. He earned All-America second team honors for his performance at the national meet. At the Big Ten Indoor Championships, he placed fourth in the 3,000- and 5,000-meter run in an extremely competitive Big Ten field -- missing the podium by just one spot in both events. He finished his indoor career with the second-fastest 5,000-meter time in program history (13:44.23). After a solid start to the outdoor season, injuries prevented him from finishing the 5,000-meter run at the Big Ten Outdoor Championship and competing in the NCAA East Preliminaries.
Ferlic came onto the 3,000-meter steeplechase scene late in the outdoor season, running the second-fastest steeple time in the Big Ten in his first-ever collegiate race at the Toledo Invitational -- just one week before the conference meet. At the Big Ten Outdoor Championships, he finished fourth, and he clocked the second-fastest time at the NCAA East Preliminaries. In just his fourth collegiate steeplechase, he placed 13th at NCAA Outdoors, missing the finals by just .49 seconds. As the highest finisher of the three freshmen to compete in the steeplechase at the national meet, he earned All-America second team honors for his performance. At the Big Ten Indoor Championships, he ran the anchor mile leg of the distance medley relay.
Arastu and Ferlic will each return next year to spearhead the Wolverines' 2014 campaign.
Contact: Whitney Dixon (734) 763-4423