Dec. 28, 2010
ABERDEEN, S.D. - Purdue senior track and field standout Bill Hardcastle was named the South Dakota Independent Men's Athlete of the Year on Tuesday, awarded annually by the South Dakota Sports Writer's Association since 1954. The award honors South Dakotans who play collegiate sports outside the state or in-state amateur athletes.
Already named a team captain for his final collegiate season, Hardcastle has had a list of successes since stepping foot on campus, including a trio of Big Ten titles and a pair of trips to the NCAA Outdoor Track & Field Championships. He won shot put and discus titles at the 2008 outdoor conference meet en route to Big Ten Field Athlete of the Year, Athlete of the Championships and Freshman of the Year honors. He also won the discus at the 2010 Big Ten Outdoor Championships, while his career best outdoor marks of 18.85 meters (61-10.25) in the shot put and 57.13 meters (187-05) in the discus each rank third all-time at Purdue. Hardcastle has six other Big Ten placewinning performances to his credit, including a bronze-medal effort indoors in 2010.
Hardcastle joins a list of prestigious Big Ten athletes to collect this honor, including Brock Lesner (Minnesota wrestling) in 1999, Chad Greenway (Iowa football) in 2004, Taylor Mehlhaff (Wisconsin football) in 2007 and Joe Krabbehoft (Wisconsin basketball) in 2008.
The Boilermakers kick off the 2011 slate Jan. 8, hosting the Purdue Invitational at Lambert Fieldhouse. Click here for the full Aberdeen American News article.