Eastern Among Top Three Academically in Big Sky

Eagle volleyball ties for best overall grade point average in conference

Eastern Washington University’s athletic programs posted the third-highest grade point average in the Big Sky Conference for the 2010-11 academic year. Eastern’s 14 teams combined for a cumulative GPA of 3.21 to finish third behind Weber State and the league’s top academic team, Montana State.

Leading the way for EWU was the women’s volleyball team, which tied for the highest overall GPA of any squad, men’s or women’s, in the Big Sky. The Eagles compiled an impressive 3.53 team GPA. In both the 2009-10 and 2010-11 seasons, the volleyball team had 11 members earn BSC All-Academic honors, which was the most for any volleyball squad in the conference both years.

Other teams faring well in this year’s academic standings were women’s cross country (3.45), women’s tennis (3.41), men’s tennis (3.35) and women’s basketball (3.27). In the 2010-11 school year, a total of 136 EWU student-athletes were honored on Big Sky All-Academic teams.

In addition to cumulative team GPAs, the Big Sky Conference takes into account graduation rates to determine overall academic standings. Eastern was second in the league in this category for the 2010-11 school year. The Eagles boasted an 87.4 percent graduation success rate.

This information was released Thursday (July 8) as part of the Sterling Silver President’s Cup announcement. After winning the school’s first-ever President’s Cup in 2009-10, Eastern finished in a tie for fifth in the 2010-11 race. The University of Montana claimed the award this year after finishing second in both the athletic and academic portions.

The Sterling Savings Presidents’ Cup is unique in collegiate athletics in that it reinforces the Big Sky’s dedication to the academic side of the student-athlete experience. The winner of this award is determined by overall athletic success combined with team grade point averages, graduation rates, and All-Conference performers with grade point averages of at least 3.0.

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