by Doug Page
LEXINGTON, Ky. – The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) announced today that 973 teams have earned the AVCA Team Academic Award for the 2017-2018 season. This number breaks the previous year's total of 835 to set an all-time high.
The Barton College men's volleyball team earned the award for the first time in program history. A total of 24 Collegiate Men's teams were recipients of the award.
The Barton College women's volleyball team received the award for the third consecutive year as 128 NCAA Division II institutions garnered academic accolades. Overall, 469 NCAA institutions across all three divisions earned the distinction.
Both programs earned the award in the same season for the first time since Barton started a men's program in 2011-12.
The award, which was initiated in the 1992-93 academic year, honors collegiate and high school volleyball teams that displayed excellence in the classroom during the school year by maintaining at least a 3.30 cumulative team grade-point average on a 4.0 scale or a 4.10 cumulative team GPA on a 5.0 scale.
The AVCA Team Academic Award is the single largest award offered by the number of schools, players and coaches honored. Since the 2000-2001 season, the number of recipients has increased every single year but two, while amassing a 619-team increase over the span of the last decade. Since the award's inception in 1993, the amount of award winners has increased from 62 to its current number of 973.
2017-18 BREAKDOWN BY CLASSIFICATION
NCAA Division I: Women 163
NCAA Division II: Women 128
NCAA Division III: Women 173
NAIA Women: 49
Two-Year College: 26
Collegiate Men: 24
High School Girls: 358 (4 sand)
High School Boys: 28
College Beach: 23