Spartanburg, S.C. – Aided by 16 Spartans with perfect 4.0 GPA’s, USC Upstate’s student-athletes posted the department’s highest GPA ever in a semester with a 3.135 GPA recorded in the fall of 2012.
The 3.135 GPA recorded by Upstate’s student-athletes last fall topped the 3.103 recorded a year ago in the fall 2011 semester. It marks the fourth time since the department began tracking combined departmental GPA’s in late 1990’s that the GPA has surpassed the 3.0 mark. The departmental GPA has never fallen below 2.89 since tracking began.
For the first time since tracking began, the men’s team combined GPA topped the 3.0 mark at 3.006. Six of the seven men’s programs improved their GPA’s from the previous semester. The women’s team GPA was 3.254. In total, a school record 66 percent (149) of Upstate’s 226 student-athletes achieved a GPA of 3.0 or better.
“We could not be more proud of the academic success of our student-athletes,” said Mike Hall, Director of Athletics at Upstate. “Competing in college athletics, especially on the Division I level, is demanding on the student-athlete. However, our student-athletes have shown a commitment to achieve academically as well as athletically. We are fortunate to have a coaching staff that is committed to stressing the importance of academics and an excellent academic support staff committed to assisting our student-athletes in achieving academic success.”
The volleyball team led the way in the department with an astounding 3.595 GPA. The team, under the direction of head coach Jennifer Calloway, routinely ranks among the top programs in the department in academic performance. The 3.595 GPA recorded by the team last semester was second to its own departmental record of 3.624 achieved in the Fall of 2007.
Twelve of Upstate’s 15 athletic programs posted a GPA of 3.0 or better, with nine posting a GPA above 3.1. Women’s tennis was second behind volleyball with a 3.481 GPA. The other programs that posted a GPA above 3.0 were women’s cross country (3.465), men’s tennis (3.335), women’s soccer (3.304), softball (3.265), women’s golf (3.202), baseball (3.173), women’s track & field (3.166), men’s soccer (3.087), men’s cross country (3.076) and men’s track & field (3.047).
The baseball team posted its highest team GPA ever on record with a 3.173, topping the 3.011 achieved in the fall 2011 semester. The men’s and women’s track & field programs experienced their greatest successes in the classroom since the inception of the programs in 2007. Both programs set records with their highest GPA’s ever, with the women’s team posting a 3.166 and the men’s team posting a 3.047.
“Our coaches have risen to the challenge to recruit quality student-athletes with both strong athletic as well as academic talents,” said Louise Ericson, Associate Athletic Director and Senior Woman Administrator. “We are getting some of the best student-athletes ever in both categories and our administration and faculty couldn’t be more proud of our department for these accomplishments. This record academic performance couldn’t have been achieved without a lot of hard work by our student-athletes, coaches, faculty and academic support staff.”
The volleyball, women’s soccer and men’s soccer teams each had three student-athletes who posted a perfect 4.0 GPA in the fall. The softball and women’s golf teams each had two with perfect 4.0 GPA’s, while baseball, women’s track & field/cross country and women’s tennis each had one. The 16 Spartans who posted a 4.0 GPA in the fall were Malika Allie (women’s golf), Dan Bacon (men’s soccer), Matt Begley (men’s soccer), Amanda Carroll (volleyball), Chris Cox (baseball), Courtney Deblois (women’s soccer), Javon Gates (volleyball), Anastasia Kolesnitchenko (women’s track & field/cross country), Constanze Kuerten (women’s tennis), Kara Lohr (softball), Kayla McAvoy (volleyball), Anna Miller (softball), Rachel Reiling (women’s golf), Stefany Saura (women’s soccer), Marvin Schmiege (men’s soccer) and Samantha Seelinger (women’s soccer).