Haleigh Bryant Named Top Female Athlete in Louisiana

Haleigh Bryant Named Top Female Athlete in Louisiana

NEW ORLEANS – LSU Gymnastics senior Haleigh Bryant was selected as the 2024 Allstate Sugar Bowl’s James J. Corbett Award winner, recognizing her as the top female amateur athlete in the state of Louisiana.

The Corbett Awards have been presented since 1967 and its honorees include 19 NFL players, nine MLB players, four NBA players, four WNBA players, and 12 Olympians.

The New Orleans Sports Awards Committee, sponsored by the Allstate Sugar Bowl, has selected annual award winners in a variety of categories since 1958; it also selects Amateur Athletes of the Month and each year’s Greater New Orleans Sports Hall of Fame class. Overall, 31 individuals and two teams will be honored for their achievements at the 2024 Allstate Sugar Bowl Awards Banquet on August 3.

Bryant, a senior from Hillsborough, North Carolina, became just the second LSU gymnast in program history to win the NCAA individual all-around title in 2024 when she posted a score of 39.7125 at the NCAA Semifinals. She finished as one of the top 10 performers on every event with her scores of 9.900 on vault, 9.925 on bars, 9.950 on beam and 9.9375 on floor in the meet. 

Susan Jackson is the only other gymnast in LSU history to win the all-around title, as she accomplished that feat and also earned the Sugar Bowl’s Corbett Award in 2010.

More unprecedented than her individual accomplishments, Bryant’s efforts led the Tigers to the program’s first-ever team national championship.

“My main goals this year were to win an SEC Championship and a national championship,” Bryant said. “It was good for me to focus on those things, and when that happened, the individual honors followed. This year exceeded my dreams; I’m so thankful for my teammates and coaches. I couldn’t have done any of this without all of them.”

Bryant swept all five NCAA All-America honors after her standout performances at the championships in Fort Worth. This moved her count to 10 All-America honors on the year after taking home five honors in the regular season, making her the first LSU gymnast to record All-America honors on every event and the all-around in both the regular season and the postseason, and just the second to claim honors on every event in the postseason. 

Bryant’s exceptional 2024 season boosts her career All-America total to 27 (14 regular season, 13 postseason), the most by any LSU gymnast in school history.

She also holds the program record for perfect scores with 18, as well as having earned the highest all-around score (39.925) in LSU history.

“I wanted to do everything possible to get this team to where it deserves to be,” Bryant said. “This program deserves everything. That was my main goal. I wouldn’t have been able to do any of this without my teammates and coaches. We all worked so hard as a team; we all supported each other. It means so much.”

Bryant is the fourth LSU gymnast to be recognized with the Corbett Award. She joins Jackson, Sarah Finnegan (2019) and current assistant coach Ashleigh Gnat (2017).

“[The Corbett Award] is such an honor, I’ve looked up to those girls for so long,” Bryant said. “I watched them on TV. To follow in their footsteps is an honor. To accomplish what my idols accomplished feels amazing. Seeing their success is why I came to LSU. It’s an honor to continue that.”

In a historical senior season, Bryant also earned the 2024 AAI Award, recognized as the Heisman Trophy for women’s gymnastics; SEC Gymnast of the Year; Honda Award for gymnastics and was named a finalist for the Honda Cup. 

“She’s a generational talent, and a generational person,” said head coach Jay Clark. “The excellence she shows on the floor, she also shows in every other aspect of her life. It’s impossible to quantify that. She is the rock that everything else was built around. And she understood that everything she accomplished wouldn’t have happened without the team.”

Bryant will return for her final year of eligibility with the Tigers in 2025 while pursuing her master’s degree.

“After talking with my family, my coaches and my teammates, it was just a really good opportunity,” Bryant said. “I love gymnastics. It’s been a part of my life for so long, and I don’t think I was really ready for it to end.”

Bryant was also the winner of the fan vote for the female Corbett Award. The other finalists were Camryn Chatellier (St. Mary’s Dominican High School Volleyball), Chloe Larry (Parkway High School Basketball, Track & Field, and Softball), and Ingrid Lindblad (LSU Golf). 

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Tiger Rag News Services

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