Aug. 21, 1997

Volleyball Team Recognized for Acadmeic Excellence

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - The Purdue volleyball team is one of 13 NCAA Division I volleyball programs to be awarded the 1997 American Volleyball Coached Association (AVCA) Team Academic Award, it was announced today.

The award recognizes teams that displayed excellence in the classroom by maintaining a team cumulative 3.3 grade-point average (on a 4.0 scale) for the 1996-97 school year.

The Boilermakers, under third-year head coach Joey Vrazel, had a composite 3.42 GPA to rank fifth among the Division I schools. They were the only Big Ten Conference team among the 13 recognized programs.

"The Team Academic Award duly recognizes those volleyball programs that advocate a proper balance between athletics and academics," AVCA executive director Sandra L. Vivas said, "taking into account that when the lights go out in the gym for the last match of a student-athlete's career, a strong academic background will show the way to the next level of acheivement."

Seven Purdue volleyball players were named Academic All-Big Ten in 1997 (tying the school record set the previous year) and also were named to the Dean's List and earned Semester Honors. Six players acheived 4.0 GPA's last spring semester.

"I obviously am extremely proud of our team's academic record," Vrazel said. "Purdue volleyball has a long-standing tradition of excellence in the classroom, and that is a credit to the student-athletes and the tremendous academic support they receive here. I know our athletes take their academics very seriously, and they are to be commended."

The volleyball team has the highest GPA among Purdue's 17 intercollegiate sports the last two years.