Now is the Time to Vote For Demi Payne and Shawn Barber!

AKRON, Ohio – Fan voting for the Bowerman Award for which University of Akron junior pole vaulter Shawn Barber (Kingwood, Texas) is one of three finalists, begins today and runs through Tuesday, August 11.

The Bowerman Award, which is presented by the United States Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA), is the highest individual accolade that can be bestowed upon a collegiate track and field student-athlete and Barber’s selection marks the first time a student-athlete from the University of Akron and the Mid-American Conference has been named as a finalist for the Bowerman Award.

The voting process provides a unique opportunity for Zips’ fans and supporters of track and field to honor Barber’s 2015 success by casting a vote for #Barber4Bowerman.

Fans may log onto to cast their votes for Barber. Fans can vote once per device over the course of the July 27-August 11 voting period.

The Bowerman Award will be announced on Thursday, Dec. 17, 2015 in San Antonio, Texas.

Fans are also encouraged to show their support of Barber by utilizing the hashtag #Barber4Bowerman on social media.

Past winners include Olympic gold medalist, World Champion and decathlon world-record holder Ashton Eaton (2010), 10,000-meter Olympic silver medalist Galen Rupp (2009), 2011 IAAF World Champion at 1500 meters Jenny Simpson (2009), 2013 100-meter hurdles World Champion Brianna Rollins (2013) and 2012 Olympic high jump bronze medalist Derek Drouin (2013).

For more information on The Bowerman, the award, the trophy and Bill Bowerman himself, visit

Barber’s selection as a Bowerman finalist comes on the heels of one of the greatest individual campaigns in the history of the Akron track and field program as Barber earned his third NCAA title overall and second during the 2015 campaign on June 10 at the NCAA Championship in Eugene, Ore. He overcame a broken pole to surpass 18-4.50 (5.50m) and garner first-team All-America accolades for the sixth time during his decorated career.

Perform was an understatement for Barber this season as he won 17 of the 19 competitions he competed in, including winning outdoor titles at the Drake, Mt. Sac and Texas Relays, respectively, and owns two of the top-four jumps in the world this spring.

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