Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback Tom Brady and American gymnast Jordan Chiles earned the United States Sports Academy’s Athlete of the Month honors for February.
Brady was named Super Bowl MVP for the fifth time in his career after leading the Buccaneers to a 31-9 win against the Kansas City Chiefs on 7 February 2021 in Tampa, Fla. Brady completed 21 of 29 passes for 201 yards and three touchdowns with a 125.8 passer rating in the win, his NFL record seventh championship.
Chiles won the women’s all-around title with a total score of 57.050 at the Winter Cup in Indianapolis on 27 February 2021. In addition to the all-around title, Chiles posted the high score on vault (14.900), balance beam (14.500), and floor exercise (13.600) in her senior level debut.
The second place finisher on the men’s side was American speed skater Joey Mantia and third place went to American athlete Grant Holloway.
Mantia won his record third World Speed Skating Championships mass start gold medal in the Netherlands on 13 February 2021. Mantia, 35, is the first man or woman to win three mass start gold medals in World Championships competition.
Holloway broke the 60-meter hurdles world record with a time of 7.29 seconds in competition at the World Indoor Tour meet in Madrid on 24 February 2021. Holloway topped the previous world record held since 1994 by Welsh hurdler Colin Jackson.
The second place finisher on the women’s side was Japanese tennis player Naomi Osaka and third place went to American alpine skier Mikaela Shiffrin.
Osaka won her fourth Grand Slam title after defeating Jennifer Brady in the Australian Open women’s final on 20 February 2021. Osaka topped Brady 6-4, 6-3 to win the Australian Open for the second time in her career.
Shiffrin became the most decorated American alpine skier in FIS World Championship history after capturing her sixth world title on 15 February 2021. She finished with a total time of 1:07.22. Shiffrin, 25, captured her first world title in 2013 and now has six golds, one silver, and two bronze medals in World Championship competition.
Each month, the public is invited to participate in the Academy’s worldwide Athlete of the Month program by nominating athletes and then voting online during the first week of every month. The online votes are used to guide the Academy selection committee in choosing the male and female monthly winners, who then become eligible for selection to the prestigious Athlete of the Year ballot. A worldwide public vote on the annual ballot is used to guide the committee in making the final selection.