NORFOLK, Va. – The Simmons College women's swimming & diving team was named a Scholar All-America Team by the College Swimming Coaches Association of America, it was announced today by the organization.
The Sharks were among 151 women's NCAA Division III programs honored and a record 638 men's and women's teams representing 394 colleges and universities spanning Division I, II and III institutions. The awards are in recognition of teams' that achieved a grade point average of 3.0 or higher during the 2016 Fall Semester.
CSCAA Executive Director Joel Shinofield feels much of the credit for teams' academic success goes to the coaches. "Our coaches understand that the essence of intercollegiate athletics is the experience each student-athlete receives, and an emphasis on academics reflects what coaches feel is most important."
Shinofield was quick to point out, however, that good grades were not at the expense of athletic excellence. "College swimming and diving has never been more competitive, and yet over 80% of our Division I member teams and nearly 80% of all teams in the Top 25 are also Scholar All-America teams."
Simmons posted a team GPA of 3.47 and boasted 19 student-athletes with a 3.50 GPA or higher, including a trio of competitors with a perfect 4.0. The Sharks ranked 34th out of 151 Division III teams to represent the top 23% in the nation.
In total 73% of all CSCAA member programs posted GPA's above 3.00 with 91% of Division I women's teams meeting the mark. Women's teams averaged a 3.336 GPA with men slightly behind at 3.22.
Simmons is enjoying its best start in school history, posting a perfect 11-0 mark in dual meet action in addition to winning its 13th straight Great Northeast Athletic Conference Championship in December. The Sharks have also seen two school records fall this season. The team returns to the water on Saturday, January 28 when it hosts Mount Holyoke College at 12:00 p.m. at the Holmes Sports Center Natatorium on the Simmons campus in Boston, Mass.
Founded in 1922, the College Swimming Coaches Association of America (CSCAA) – the oldest organization of college coaches in America - is a professional organization of college swimming and diving coaches dedicated to serving and providing leadership for the advancement of the sport of swimming & diving at the collegiate level.