"I'm really excited for Andreé," head coach Sarah Patterson said. "As much as she's recognized for her gymnastics ability, I think this shows the campus-wide appeal she has. She is a great gymnast, but she's also so much more. She's a good student and a great person. She works as tirelessly in the community as she does in the gym. I think all those things were a factor in her receiving this honor."
It marks the second time in the past five years a Crimson Tide gymnast has been a part of the court. Former NCAA All-Around Champion Meredith Willard was the first athlete to make the court in 1997.
"It's neat," Pickens said. "And it's a great honor to represent the athletes on the homecoming queen court. It was an honor just to be picked first by my teammates and then by my fellow athletes to represent them on the ballot. I'm really proud."
Since Willard, basketball players Reagan Croyle (1999) and Joni Crenshaw (2000) have both been elected to the court. Croyle was elected homecoming queen.
A two-time captain of the Crimson Tide gymnastics team, Pickens is also the president of the Student-Athlete Advisory Board and Alabama's representative to the SEC's SAAB. Pickens has earned nine All-American honors during the first three years of her Tide career and won the NCAA balance beam title in 1999. In 2000, Pickens led the Tide to a Southeastern Conference Championship.
This fall Pickens was one of five honorable mention selections in Glamour Magazine's annual "Top-10 Collegiate Women" issue.
The winner of the homecoming queen competition will be announced Friday night at the pep rally on Friday night on the University Quad. The queen and her court will be recognized at the pep rally and again at halftime of the Alabama-LSU football game on Saturday.
Pickens and her teammates will be signing autographs from 12:30 - 1:30 p.m. on the Quad Saturday. From 10 to 11:30 a.m. on Saturday, the gymnastics team will be practicing in the practice facility at the rear of Coleman Coliseum; fans are welcome to come watch.