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Point Park volleyball nets AVCA Academic Team Award with 3.51 Team GPA

Posted on July 23, 2012 at 10:45 a.m.

The Pioneers had a 3.51 team GPA in 2011-12 and played in the NAIA national tourney at 36-6 overall.


PITTSBURGH -- The Point Park University volleyball program received the American Volleyball Coaches Association's Academic Team Award for the 2011-12 year, as announced by the AVCA on Friday (July 20, 2012).

The award, which has been in existence since 1992-93, is given by the AVCA to collegiate and high school volleyball programs that have a team grade-point average of 3.30 or higher for an academic year.

Point Park had a 3.51 team GPA for 2011-12 and was one of only 33 volleyball programs (6.19%) in the NAIA to receive the recognition for last year. The Pioneers also excelled on the court last year with an overall record of 36-6, an appearance in the NAIA national tournament and an American Mideast Conference Tournament championship.

"It is extremely gratifying watching these young ladies excel in the classroom and on the court," said Pioneers head coach Mike Bruno. "Our program will continue to provide a vehicle for student-athletes to excel in both areas. We pride our program on being balanced in academics and athletics."

In order to receive the award, schools must have a team GPA of 3.30 or higher and be nominated by their coach, who must be a member of the AVCA.

From the AVCA Release (July 20, 2012) (click link above for full release):

"Many coaches tell us they take more pride in and hear more positive feedback about winning the AVCA Team Academic Award than anything else they do all year," said AVCA Executive Director Kathy DeBoer. "While it is undeniable that the sport we coach is zero-sum on the scoreboard, it is a tool for empowerment on other fronts.  The 533 coaches whose teams won this academic award understand the value of both playing to win and winning through play. A well-deserved congratulations to each team and coach!"   

The 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 200% increase over the span of the last decade.  Since the award's inception in 1993, the award has risen by an astounding 760%. NCAA Division I recorded their highest-ever total number of recipients, honoring 103 programs while Division II easily surpassed last year's record of 57 winners with 69 this year.  Division III also set a new record with 90 winners and the high school division increased their all-time high of 192 recipients to 220.  Finally, the NCAA men broke new ground landing a record seven schools on the final AVCA Team Academic Award list.

Prior to 2011-12, only 13 teams had attained the pinnacle of volleyball success in both earning the AVCA Team Academic Award and winning their respective collegiate national championship in the same academic year. This year, the AVCA is proud to recognize three programs -- Concordia University-St. Paul (NCAA Division II), Cowley College (NJCAA Division II) and Clearwater Christian College (NCCAA Division II) - all three of whom excelled in the classroom and on the court.

Over 1,000 different schools have earned the award in the program's 20-year history, with exactly 4,828 awards been given out in total. Only two institutions, both high schools, have earned the distinction all 19 years: Jonesboro High School (Jonesboro, Arkansas) and Ross S. Sterling High School (Baytown, Texas).


Division                                   Number of recipients                Percent Breakdown*
NCAA Division I Women                        103                                    19.14%
NCAA Division II Women                        69                                      12.57%
NCAA Division III Women                       90                                      16.89%
NAIA Women                                             33                                      6.19%  
Two-Year College Women                     13                                      2.44%
NCCAA Women                                           1                                      0.19%

NCAA Collegiate Men                                 7                                      1.31%
High School (Girls and Boys)                220                                    41.28%
     High School Girls                               198                                              
     High School Boys                                 22 
* Percentage is based on each category's breakdown of the total 2011-2012 Team Academic recipients.


You can find this year's list of recipients on our website by clicking HERE


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