The Laith Al-Agba Award is named for former men's tennis player Laith Al-Agba, who exemplified the Boilermaker spirit during his time at Purdue. The Bremerton, Wash. native was a four-year letterwinner from 1998 to 2002 and three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection.
As a freshman, Al-Agba paired with Derek Myers and was awarded both a national ranking and spot in the semifinals of the ITA Regional IV Championships. Al-Agba's doubles success continued with Carl McCafferty during the 2001 and 2002 seasons amassing 40 wins.
After graduating from Purdue with a degree in business management, Al-Agba became a wine distributor in the Pacific Northwest. In May of 2007, the former Boilermaker was the victim of a terrible accident and passed away.
Because of Al-Agba's lasting impression of the program, a fund was established in his honor with the mission of strengthening the bond between Boilermaker alumni and current student-athletes. A commemorative gathering, the Laith Al-Agba Alumni Tennis Challenge, is played annually to allow former Purdue players to come together to share friendships and team unity, two of Laith's greatest gifts.
In honor of his selfless dedication, to the Purdue tennis program, the John Purdue Club established a mean for those touched by Laith to show their gratitude in a way that will forever tie has name to Boilermaker tennis - the Laith Al-Agba Memorial Fund. A donation form is linked below.
"Laith always was all about putting the team first," said Tim Madden, who coached Al-Agba. "He didn't care if he was playing at No. 3 doubles. That was fine with him, because his attitude consistently reflected doing whatever was best for the team."
This Laith Al-Agba Award is presented to the player who best represents qualities that define Purdue tennis as Al-Agba did.
Selflessness: prioritizing one's individual goals to fit the needs of the team for ultimate success. Passion: demonstrating a desire to excel at his chosen craft so it is clearly recognized by friends and foes alike. Leadership: leading by example to do what is necessary for the good of the team.
Determination: pursuing excellence with great sense of purpose and conviction.
Compassion: believing friendship and respect are the backbone of the team and taking responsibility to foster a true team environment.
It is expected that the recipient of this award will take great pride in their selection, reflect on why they have been chosen, and take steps to further develop these qualities in themselves and others. Recipients of Laith Al-Agba Award:
2007-08 - P.J. Rose
2008-09 - P.J. Rose
2009-10 - P.J. Rose