The Lees-McRae mens and womens volleyball teams received the American Volleyball Coaches Association Team Academic Award for the 2013-14 season, the association announced Tuesday.
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.
"Too often athletic participation is associated with academic underachievement and this stereotype is simply false when it comes to volleyball," said AVCA Executive Director Kathy DeBoer. "Couple the smarts represented by these teams with the competitive experience and team-focused training gained on the court and we have a potent formula for future leadership! What a significant contribution that is by their coaches and schools."
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 have increased every single year but one, while amassing an overall 500% 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 676.
NCAA Division II set a new record with 94 honorees, while this was the first time for both LMC programs to receive recognition.
As a coach, getting this recognition from the AVCA was my #1 goal for both of our teams. Its not easy finding a successful balance between academics and athletics, especially with the brutal travel schedules both teams had last year, praised head coach Dave Schmidlin.
But, they still found a way to get it done in the classroom, with both teams achieving well over the minimum 3.30 GPA to qualify for this award. Everyone involved with the Lees-McRae mens and womens volleyball programs should be very proud of this accomplishment.
BREAKDOWN BY CLASSIFICATION
Division Number of recipients Percent Breakdown*
NCAA Division I Women 134 20%
NCAA Division II Women 94 14%
NCAA Division III Women 126 18.6%
NAIA Women 33 5%
Two-Year College 22 3.2%
NCCAA 2 0.3%
NCAA Collegiate Men 7 1%
High School Girls 225 33%
High School Boys 27 4%
College Sand 6 0.9%