The Southeastern Conference (SEC) named University of Florida (UF) gymnast, Leah Clapper, as the 2021 SEC Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
The SEC office announced the award prior to the 40th annual SEC Championship meet on Saturday. The Gators placed third at the conclusion of the meet behind LSU and Alabama.
Clapper is currently pursuing an undergraduate degree in advertising, along with her dual enrollment in graduate classes. The junior from Ann Arbor, Michigan, has a 3.98 grade point average and plans to receive her bachelor’s degree this summer. Following her undergraduate studies, Clapper plans to continue her scholastic endeavors and earn her Professional Master’s in the College of Journalism and Communications at UF.
This season, Clapper competed on balance beam, floor and uneven bars. She especially found great success on the beam this year. In the Gators meet against Kentucky on Feb. 19, she earned her first-ever collegiate 10.0 on the beam. Following that match, Clapper earned a near-perfect 9.975 on beam in the Gators meet against Auburn. This near-perfect score earned Clapper a piece of the beam title. This beam title was one of three beam titles she earned in 2021.
This year, Clapper continued to prove her attention to detail off the beam as she posted her collegiate bests for both uneven bars (9.875) and floor exercise (9.825).
In her free time, Clapper writes for her food and wellness blog. Her blog, Zest & Fitness, serves as a platform in which Clapper can “inspire others to live happier and healthier lives through food.”
Clapper has been a vegetarian for six years. Her blog features recipes that are all vegetarian and mainly plant-based. Clapper strives to demonstrate that clean eating can be easy and fun.