Rice women sweep C-USA Athlete of the Year honors

Michelle Fokam and Grace Forbes dominated despite COVID restrictions

Two Rice Owls earned big-time conference honors.

Conference USA announced Michelle Fokam as the Conference USA Female Field Athlete of the Year, and Grace Forbes as the Track Athlete of the Year.

Fokam, a Katy native, joined Houston’s Jenny Adams as the only athletes in league history to win the C-USA Female Field Athlete of the Year three times. According to Rice, she earned USTFCCCA First Team All-American honors with her third place finish at the NCAA Outdoor Championships, breaking her own school record in the process with a leap of 14.04m (46-0.75) in the triple jump. She won her third consecutive C-USA Field Performer of the Meet at the Outdoor Championships after winning both the triple jump and long jump, her ninth and 10th career C-USA titles. Fokam also won the triple jump at the C-USA Indoor Championships while placing second in the long jump. In total, Fokam won 13 different jump events between the indoor and outdoor seasons in 2021.

Graces Forbes recently secured USTFCCCA First Team All-American accolades after placing seventh in the 10,000m at the NCAA Outdoors, completing the hat trick with First Team All-American honors in the 5000m at the NCA Indoors and NCAA Cross Country Championships all this semester. Forbes won the 10,000m at the NCAA West Prelims and swept the C-USA Female Outdoor/Indoor Track Performer of the Meet Awards.

In 2021, Forbes won a combined six C-USA titles and broke five school records. She was also named the USTFCCCA National Athlete of the Week (2/23), the first in program history, and won 10 individual events.

Both women will be in Eugene, Oregon to compete at the U.S. Olympic Trials in the 10,000m on June 26.