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Ali Cochrane Up for NCAA Woman of the Year, Already a Winner

Ali Cochrane Up for NCAA Woman of the Year, Already a Winner

Buffalo, New York – September 07, 2017 – D’Youville graduate Alexandra “Ali” Cochrane has had quite a run of recognition — named to the AMCC All-Sportsmanship team last year, and now she’s in the top thirty candidates to be NCAA’s Woman of the Year.

Woman of the Year would be the icing on the cake for Ali’s many other notable accomplishments. While at D’Youville, Ali received the Exercise and Sports Studies Departmental Award, the Student Affairs Award of Distinction, the Scholar-Athlete of the Year Award, the D’Youville Women's Basketball Spartan Award, and the D'Youville Unsung Hero Award. She was also named to the AMCC All-Academic Team from 2014 to 2017, nominated as a member of the Chi Alpha Sigma National Collegiate Student-Athlete Honor Society, and received an AMCC Best of the Rest recognition.

Cochrane graduated from D’Youville with a bachelor's degree in Exercise and Sports Studies in three years with a 3.99 GPA and has continued on like many other D’Youville graduates — in pursuit of making the world a better place. Currently, working towards her doctorate of physical therapy at the University of South Florida, Ali explains what it means to be nominated for the NCAA Woman of the Year, who inspired her, and what it meant to go to go to D’Youville.

D’Youville: How does it feel to be nominated to be NCAA’s Woman of the Year?

Ali: Being nominated for NCAA Woman of the Year was an honor in itself. When I was told that I had won the conference nomination, I was pleasantly surprised. I know how many great women I played with at D'Youville, and I know there are hundreds more women in our conference who would be eligible for this honor.

Knowing that I am held at a such a high esteem to be recognized in this manner is an amazing feeling. There are hundreds of thousands of women who are NCAA student athletes, and each one of them has worked extremely hard to get to where they are at. I am inspired to continue to work hard and make all of the people who have believed in me and helped me get through college proud.

D’Youville: What if you don’t make it into the final round for NCAA Woman of the Year?

Ali: If I do not move on in the NCAA Woman of the Year process, I will walk away knowing that what I have been doing for the community and people around me have had a positive effect.

D’Youville: What or who has inspired you along the way?

Ali: [Many have] but there are a few who have had an especially large impact on my life. My mother has always supported me in every decision I made, even when that decision was moving over a thousand miles away from home to play college basketball instead of accepting my Bright Futures scholarships in Florida and attending a university here. She always checked in on me and kept me positive when I would struggle with the amount of things I had on my plate.

My high school basketball coach, Matthew Rocha, is the reason I fell in love with basketball and pursued it in college. He lit a spark in me and gave me a passion that made me work extremely hard for what I wanted.

D’Youville: Why did you come to D’Youville?

Ali: The reason I chose D'Youville College, in addition to its amazing academic reputation – the exercise and sports studies direct entry to the doctor of physical therapy program – was the head coach Dan Glover. He had a vision for the team and for all the players that gave me energy and kept me going. He was a coach, a mentor, a friend; he became family through my time at D'Youville.

I have a very supportive boyfriend of seven years, Adam Ibrahim. Adam has always been my rock and encouraged me to chase my dreams. I would not be who I am if not for the contributions of so many people along the way.

D’Youville: What’s next for you?

Ali: As I pursue a career as a Doctor of Physical Therapy, I have dedicated my life to helping others move well and live better. As a graduate student at the University of South Florida, I will have the opportunity to participate in the Bridge Clinic, which is a student-driven free clinic for uninsured patients living in the University Community of Tampa. Physical therapy students, along with students from other professions, are able to volunteer to help the underserved population. This will help develop my skills as a professional while giving others the chance to receive service.

I am extremely excited to use my knowledge to help others in this amazing field of Physical Therapy.


Ali added that she’s in her first month of DTP school and “it’s intense to say the least,” but whatever challenges are thrown at her it’s safe to say she will rise to them. Whether she moves on to the next round of NCAA’s Woman of a Year or not, Ali will always be a champion to D’Youville College, the world of successful student athletes, and the many D’Youville graduates making a difference in the lives of others.


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