University of South Dakota receives Summit League Institutional Academic Achievement Award

VERMILLION, S.D. -- The University of South Dakota athletic department has won the Summit League’s Institutional Academic Achievement Award. The award goes to the school placing its highest percentage of list-eligible athletes on the Summit League Commissioner’s List of Academic Excellence, which was released on Thursday.

USD had a league-best 76 percent of its list-eligible athletes (112 total) recognized on the 2011-12 list, ahead of both North Dakota State and South Dakota State, who were at 71 percent.

In addition, Coyote women’s soccer earned a Team Achievement Award – which is awarded in each spot based on percentage of list eligible athletes on the Commissioner’s list. USD had 100 percent of its eligible women’s soccer players on the list.

In order for a student-athlete to be selected to the Commissioner’s List of Academic Excellence, he/she must carry a 3.00 or better cumulative GPA, achieve sophomore academic standing at the institution, have used a year of eligibility and be on the squad list in the sport in which he/she is nominated. Transfers, graduate students and junior college graduates must have completed one academic year at the nominating institution. True freshmen, redshirt freshmen and first-year transfers are not eligible for the award.

Four list-eligible Coyote student-athletes have cumulative 4.0 grade-point-averages (GPAs) for their academic career: senior Nick Beare (Sioux Falls, S.D.), juniors Alexa Duling (Gregory, S.D.) and Megan Meyer (Bismarck, N.D.) and sophomore Jeff Mettler (Eureka, S.D.). That group is part of the 32 list-eligible athletes in the Summit League to maintain a 4.0 cumulative GPA.

In terms of total honorees, Coyote women’s track and field led the way with 25, followed by women’s swimming and diving with 13, men’s track and field with 13, women’s cross country with 12 and softball and men’s swimming and diving with eight each. The complete list of USD athletes on the Commissioner’s list can be found on the Coyotes’ new website, www.goyotes.com.

ABOUT USD

Founded in 1862 and the first university in the Dakotas, the University of South Dakota is the only public liberal arts university in the state, with 206 undergraduate and 71 graduate programs in the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Education, School of Law, Sanford School of Medicine, School of Health Sciences, Beacom School of Business and College of Fine Arts. With an enrollment of nearly 10,000 students and more than 400 faculty, USD has a 17:1 student/faculty ratio, and it ranks among the best in academics and affordability. USD’s 17 athletic programs compete at the NCAA Division I level.

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