August 13, 2013
LEXINGTON, Ky. (SMU) — The SMU Volleyball Team earned the AVCA Team Academic Award for the second consecutive season, posting a 3.55 team GPA during the 2012-13 academic year.
The Mustangs are one of 130 NCAA Division I volleyball programs to earn the honor.
This year, the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) recognized a record 622 programs, ranging from high school boys and girls to all levels of men's and women's collegiate programs.
"As a program, we strive for excellence both on the court and in the classroom. SMU is an elite educational institution, and to earn an honor like this says a lot about the quality student-athletes we have in our program," head coach Lisa Seifert said. "Dr. Sue Bierman and our academic staff do a great job working with our kids and offering support."
The award, which was initiated in the 1992-93 academic year, honors collegiate and high school volleyball teams that displayed excellence in the classroom during the school year by maintaining at least a 3.30 cumulative team grade-point average on a 4.0 scale or a 4.10 cumulative team GPA on a 5.0 scale.
"Excellence doesn't happen by accident, either on the court or in the classroom," said AVCA Executive Director Kathy DeBoer. "It takes consistent preparation, relentless effort, and determined leadership. A full year of academic achievement, by an entire team of individual students, is a remarkable achievement. What better way to start a new season than with a celebration of an award so emblematic of all that is necessary for sustained success."
The AVCA Team Academic Award has become one of the AVCA's fastest growing awards programs, seeing an impressive surge in teams honored over the past several years. Since the 2000-2001 season, the number of recipients has increased every single year but one, while amassing an overall 300% increase over the span of the last decade. Since the award's inception in 1993, the amount of award winners has increased from 62 to its current number of 622.
SMU Volleyball begins the season on Aug. 30 in San Marcos, Texas at the Texas State Classic. The first home matches, which will be played on campus in the Dedman Center, are Sept. 6 and 7 as the Mustangs host the SMU Invite.
Fans can preview the team at an exhibition match against SMU volleyball alumni on Aug. 24 in the Dedman Center at 3 p.m. There is no admission fee for any home matches during the 2013 season.
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