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Kauf Named Finalist for Wooden Citizenship Cup

THE FLATS – Georgia Tech softball senior Emma Kauf has been named one of 13 finalists for the 2023 Coach Wooden Citizenship Cup, Athletes for a Better World announced on Tuesday. The announcement of one male and one female College Cup recipient will be made during the first week of January, 2023.

Having put together an impressive athletic career on The Flats, Kauf has also made a tremendous impact in the community. Kauf has served on the Georgia Tech Student-Athlete Advisory Board (SAAB) since 2020 as a softball representative before becoming chairwoman of the community service board in 2021, helping plan and organize logistics for all community service athletics events. She also serves on the Atlantic Coast Conference Student-Advisory Committee and the Softball Advisory Board.

Last year, Kauf assisted in the creation and implementation of a Georgia Tech Dream on 3 project, helping provide a sports themed dream to an individual with life-altering conditions. The project left such an impact on Kauf that she helped spearhead the initiative in 2022. Kauf has also volunteered time with Maggie 5k (a running event to help raise awareness for women with ovarian cancer), Big B Clothing Drive (collection benefitting the Gateway Center) and the Michael Isenhour Toy Drive (GT’s biggest collection benefitting the Atlanta Children’s Shelter).

Perhaps most notably, Kauf was the winner of the 2019 Gatorade’s Play It Forward Program and received a $10,000 grant to donate to a local community organization in need. Kauf chose the Northeast Family Center in Lincoln, Neb., as the recipient of the grant. Kauf spent every summer at the hometown organization, which provides support for kids and families needing after school and summer care, holding clinics and hanging out with kids.

Academically, Kauf has thrived at Tech as she’s twice been named to the ACC Academic Honor Roll as well as the All-ACC Academic Team.

A team captain since her arrival on The Flats, Kauf has excelled on the field as the top catcher in the conference over the past two seasons. The standout behind the dish has been named First Team All-ACC in each of the last two seasons, also earning NFCA Southeast Second Team All-Region honors a season ago while landing on the ACC All-Freshman Team in 2021. A two-time ACC Player of the week recipient, Kauf has displayed her proficiency in the backstop and at the plate as she developed a knack for catching runners and set multiple national marks with her bat a season ago. The slim slugger laced 25 doubles in 2022, tying second in program history in single-season doubles while ranking second in the NCAA and leading the ACC with the mark. Leading the nation in doubles per game (0.45), Kauf also topped the conference in hits (71) last year.

The recipients of the annual award will be recognized at the awards ceremony on April 27, 2023 at the College Football Hall of Fame. Kauf joins elite company in being selected as a finalist for the award as track and field star Bria Matthews won the award in 2021.

About the Wooden Citizenship Cup
Founded by Athletes for a Better World (ABW), a non-profit organization committed to changing the culture of American sports, the Wooden Cup is unique in that it is open to athletes in all high school, collegiate, Olympic, and professional sports. Annual nominations are open to every division and conference in college sports, and to athletes in public and private high schools across the country in partnership with the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association.

The Wooden Cup is named for the legendary John Wooden, who won ten national championships during the years 1964-1975 as basketball coach at UCLA, and is considered one of college sports’ greatest coaches. Universally regarded as one of the finest human beings to ever grace the world of sports, his character, conduct and selfless gifts stand at the highest level by any standard. When Coach Wooden learned about Athletes for a Better World, he gave authorization to attach his name to this annual award, and he attended and addressed the inaugural event in Los Angeles in 2005. In his honor, the Coach Wooden Citizenship Cup is presented to four distinguished athletes, one collegiate, one professional or Olympic, and a male and female from the high school ranks, for their character and leadership both on and off the field.

Competitive Drive Initiative

In a unified endeavor, Georgia Tech, the Georgia Tech Foundation, Georgia Tech athletics and the Alexander-Tharpe Fund have come together to accelerate funding for student-athlete scholarships with the launch of the Competitive Drive Initiative. The initiative kicks off with the Accelerate GT Match Program, where any new gift to the A-T Fund’s Athletic Scholarship Fund made through Dec. 31 will be matched dollar-for-dollar by the Georgia Tech Foundation, up to $2.5 million. Should Accelerate GT reach its $2.5 million fundraising goal, the matching gift would result in a $5 million impact for Georgia Tech athletics. To learn more and to contribute online, visit

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