AZUSA, Calif. -- For the second consecutive year, Azusa Pacific University claimed the Great Northwest Athletic Conference academic team championship in football, posting the highest team grade point average among the conference’s six football programs. The Cougars were one of three teams who claimed GNAC championships both on the field and in the classroom.
“An award like this is especially satisfying for me because it tangibly demonstrates Azusa Pacific University's deep commitment to the academic success of its student-athletes,” head coach Victor Santa Cruz said. “It is easy to get caught up with identifying your program in victories and defeats, but an award like this reflects true success. This academic championship is a direct result of the collaborative efforts of the academic support program Azusa Pacific provides, which starts from the top with the department leadership of Athletics Director Gary Pine and is a program unrivaled in its pursuit for innovation and relational connectedness.”
Azusa Pacific’s 2013-14 team GPA was 2.92, which was the highest football team GPA in the 13-year history of the GNAC team academic award. It also marked an improvement over the 2.88 GPA it posted en route to the GNAC football academic team title last year. Dixie State was a close second with a 2.90 team GPA, while four-time GNAC football academic team champion Central Washington finished third with a combined 2.76 GPA.
The GNAC academic team title followed the announcement of 150 student-athletes from other Azusa Pacific sports who were named to the 2013-14 Pacific West Conference Academic All-Conference Team. The Cougars’ 150 PacWest academic all-conference recipients tied for the most in the conference.
Last fall, Azusa Pacific produced eight selections to the GNAC Academic All-Conference team. Six of the Cougars selected were repeat honorees.