K-State track athlete is a Big 12 ‘Champion for Life’

Big 12 Conference

Kansas State University track athlete Sara Savatovic is one of the athletes selected for “Big 12 Champions for Life,” a new initiative of the Big 12 Conference designed to highlight the personal successes of its student-athletes. (Illustration: Big 12 Conference)

It was 30 minutes before her scheduled interview when Sara Savatovic arrived at Bill Snyder Family Stadium. She’d agreed to sit down with Big 12 Conference correspondent Wendell Barnhouse to talk about her experiences as a student-athlete, and the 22-year-old senior hammer thrower couldn’t hide her exuberance.

“I can’t believe I was asked to do this,” she said. “It is such an honor. I love K-State, what it’s allowed me to do. It’s changed my life. I’m so excited to talk about this school and how my scholarship changed my life.”

Savatovic is one of the athletes selected for “Big 12 Champions for Life,” a new initiative of the Big 12 Conference designed to highlight the personal successes of its student-athletes and underscore the positive impact of athletic scholarship. Public Service Announcements promoting the campaign debuted Oct. 3 during Big 12 Conference football games on ABC, ESPN2, FS1 and FSN. 

The native of Crvenka, Serbia, Savatovic is a public relations major. She came to K-State because she wanted to attend a school where she could suceed in both athletics and academics. 

“I was a good track athlete, but back home it’s really hard to go to college and be an athlete at the same time,” she said. “You have to decide whether you want to go pro or go to college. You have to choose between your sport or your education. I wanted both.”

She started talking with former K-State coach, Steve Fritz, on Facebook, and he came to an international meet where she was competing. She decided to visit K-State, and she immediately felt like she had found the perfect fit. 

“I really didn’t know actually anything about college life,” she said. “I was just coming to see. I didn’t know what it was going to be. I just felt so wonderful there. I think from the first moment I got here, I started loving everything. I remember people back home asking me about how I liked K-State. I said I was like Alice in Wonderland … ‘Sara in Wonderland.’”

She said she is thankful for the support she receives from her teammates and from the university as she works toward her goal of winning the conference championship. She is glad she found her way to Manhattan.

“I think I was just meant to come here,” she said. “For me, this is the best place in the world. Like, I can’t imagine myself anywhere else. We travel everywhere, so I’ve seen a lot of other campuses. But they are just not K-State. This place is just great for me.”

Learn more about K-State and Champions for Life.
 

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