Baylor student-athletes post impressive fall semester numbers

FOCUSED ON THE END GOAL Senior western rider Karyn Simpson is seen studying a textbook for her class. Equestrian compiled 45 of the 304 total student athletes on the Fall 2016 Commissioner's Honor Roll. Photo credit: Dayday Wynn

By Ben Everett | Sports Writer

Baylor student-athletes continue to excel in the classroom, posting a composite 3.27 GPA in the fall 2016 semester and continuing a streak of 17 straight semesters with a cumulative 3.0 GPA or higher.

Baylor Director of Athletics Mack Rhoades expressed his satisfaction in the academic accomplishments of Baylor’s student-athletes.

“We are proud that our student-athletes have achieved a 3.0 GPA or higher for the 17th consecutive semester,” Baylor Director of Athletics said in a press release. “It is a testament to the commitment and collaboration of our student-athletes, coaches and support staff with professors and advisers on campus. We look forward to building upon our academic success in the future as we prepare champions for life.”

Thirty seven student-athletes earned 4.0 GPAs, including senior offensive lineman Blake Blackmar, Lady Bears senior guard Alexis Jones, Jimmy Bendeck and Julian Lenz of the men’s tennis team and eight members of the Baylor soccer team.

Baylor athletics placed 137 on the Dean’s List, which comprises Baylor students who earn a 3.7 GPA, are enrolled in a minimum of 12 hours and make no grade lower than a “C”. Those who made the Dean’s List include 14 members of the acrobatics and tumbling team, 21 members of the equestrian team and 22 members of women’s track and field.

The Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll is awarded to Big 12 student-athletes who post a GPA of 3.0 or better in a given semester.

Three hundred and seven student-athletes from Baylor were placed on the Commissioner’s Honor Roll, most notably 21 from the baseball team, 40 from the football team and 47 from women’s track and field. In total, 8,724 Baylor student-athletes have been named to the Commissioner’s Honor Roll.

Baylor football placed six players on the Big 12 All-Academic team for the season, with 10 more being named to the second team. Additionally, 11 Baylor soccer players made it onto the Big 12 All-Academic team with another two being added on the second team.

Bart Byrd, associate athletic director for student-athlete services, said academic success in the athletic department is a team effort.

“Academic success at Baylor has grown to be a tradition. Our goal in the athletic department is to prepare champions for life, and our student-athletes have proven once again this fall that academics is the first stepping stone in that goal,” Byrd said in an email to the lariat. “I am extremely proud of how hard our student-athlete services staff works to make sure that we are preparing our student-athletes for life by making certain that our student-athletes are successful in the classroom. The success we have each semester is truly a team effort by the student-athletes, professors, coaches and our support staff. I look forward to seeing how successful we will be in future semesters at Baylor.”

Baseball, football, acrobatics and tumbling, equestrian, soccer, men’s tennis and women’s tennis all tied or set new records for fall term GPA. Baylor women’s golf led all programs with a cumulative GPA of 3.75 in the fall semester.