Fifty-four ACU student-athletes earned spots on the Southland Conference Honor Roll for the fall 2013 semester.
The Southland Conference Commissioner’s Fall Academic Honor Roll recognizes student-athletes who maintained a minimum 3.00 grade-point average throughout the semester.
Eighty-seven percent of eligible Wildcats qualified for the honor, with 20 student-athletes posting a 4.0 GPA.
ACU athletic director Jared Mosley said he was pleased with the high percentage.
“Nine out of 12 of our programs were at that mark, so that piece of it speaks volumes to realizing what we thought we were going to be able to capitalize on from an academic standpoint when we began that process going to Div. I,” Mosley said.
He said ACU takes pride in having not only strong athletic teams, but also strong athletes inside the classroom.
“It’s certainly something I’m proud of because our student-athletes, this first semester, have done a great job of really knocking it out of the park in the classroom,” said Mosley.
The Department of Athletics makes sure athletes are attending class and paying attention as well as doing work outside of class, he said.
“I enjoy thriving in both the field and the classroom so it is an honor to be recognized for the honor roll,” said Brie Buschman, senior soccer player and communications major from Amarillo.
“One thing to keep in mind, even with those numbers, it doesn’t include football because they weren’t eligible to be on that list because we didn’t play a Southland [Conference] schedule,” Mosley said. “So if you were to add those student athletes in football who had a 3.00 or higher, our numbers would have been even significantly more.”
The large number of student-athletes on the honor roll also helps the Department of Athletics going forward in Div. I.
“The academic side has been really rewarding,” said Mosely. “One of the things on the front end of our transition that we anticipated was that we were going to see a pretty drastic shift in the academic quality and the type of student athletes who were attracted to here.”
Coaches also played a pivotal role in the success of their players inside the classroom.
“From the very beginning, our coaches tell us that we are student-athletes and we must always keep in mind how important our education is,” said Buschman.
Through all the changes Div. I brings, ACU student-athletes remain confident and focused inside the classroom.
“To be able to have time where we’re not eligible for post-season championships and to have that many student athletes honored, it’s a great thing,” said Mosley.