Four HBCU Baseball Teams Recognized For Academic Excellence

Four Historically Black College and University (HBCUs) earned Team Academic Excellence Award from the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) for their work in the classroom.

The four – Voorhees College, Alabama State, North Carolina Central, and Coppin State were among the schools to receive the 2020 ABCA Team Academic Excellence Award, announced by the organization.

The HBCU programs were among 288 programs from the NCAA Division I, II, III, and NAIA programs honored across the country for the commitment of their student-athletes.

The ABCA has a long tradition of recognizing the achievements of baseball coaches and student-athletes with awards programs that include the ABCA Rawlings All-Region Awards, the ABCA/Diamond Regional & National Coaches of the Year and several other major awards.


Voorhees College

The Voorhees College Baseball team excels on the field and in the classroom after recently being awarded the Team Academic Excellence Award from the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA), the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), and by the Association of Independent Institutions (A.I.I.).

Voorhees was one of several Historically Black College and University (HBCU) baseball programs chosen for the prestigious award out of 400 programs honored.

Head Baseball Coach Marcus Smith said he stresses to the players that baseball is temporary, but education will sustain for a lifetime. “This award is more significant than winning championships; it defines the true definition of a student-athlete. Also, in my recruiting process, my priority is academics because this allows stability within your program. I look forward to continuing success in the classroom and on the field as well,” Smith said.

Voorhees was also recognized by the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), as the only HBCU baseball program, with nine other institutions for their commitment to character development and academics success through the organization’s 2020 Champions of Character program.

Athletic programs were measured for their commitment to showing character in competition, character development through training, promotion and recognition, and academic success. Gold-level schools received a 90-100 point score, silver recognition was earned at 75-89 points and bronze-level was at 60-74 points.

Four A.I.I. athletic programs received the gold rating, while two earned a silver rating and three were at bronze status – out of 180 national honorees.

Those colleges recognized were:

Gold

College of the Ozarks (Mo.)

Cottey College (Mo.)

Georgia Gwinnett College

Haskell Indian Nations University (Kan.)

Silver

Crowley’s Ridge College (Ark.)

Voorhees College (S.C.)

Bronze

Florida National University

Northern New Mexico College

Penn State Schulykill


Alabama State University

Alabama State was another one of 400 schools and the only school from the Southwestern Athletic Conference (SWAC) recognized by the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) for its work in the classroom.

The Hornets were among the schools to receive the 2020 ABCA Team Academic Excellence Award, announced by the organization for programs that posted a GPA of 3.0 or above on a 4.0 scale for the entire 2020 academic year. Alabama State was one of 68 programs at the NCAA Division I level to earn the honor.

It is the second consecutive year that Alabama State has been named the recipient of the award.


North Carolina Central University

North Carolina Central University baseball program was also recognized by the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) for its work in the classroom, as the program received the Team Academic Excellence Award.

The Eagles are among 68 programs recognized at the Division I level and one of two Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) programs.

NCCU baseball head coach Jim Koerner holds a high amount of pride in his squad’s work in the classroom. “To be one of only 68 Division I baseball programs in the country to receive this award is a tremendous honor,” Koerner said. “Our baseball student-athletes put in a lot of work to achieve at a high level both on and off the field. We are all extremely proud of this accomplishment and look forward to future successes.”

The NCCU baseball program currently boasts a team grade point average of 3.30. During the spring semester, 21 baseball student-athletes achieved a 3.5 GPA or better, including seven with a perfect 4.0 GPA.


Coppin State University
For the third-straight year, the Coppin State University baseball team received the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA) Team Academic Excellence Award.

The second school from the (MEAC) to receive the honor, the Eagles recorded a 3.30 team GPA for the 2020 academic year which included 18 players recording over a 3.0 grade point average.

Head coach Sherman Reed stated “I’m proud of the culture that our student-athletes have established for the baseball team pertaining to academic achievement. It’s become more the norm and expectation than simply a goal. We have preached as a coaching staff that every opportunity that’ll come their way begins with high academic achievement. I’m even more proud of their accomplishments this past spring given the sudden adjustment to distance learning.”

The ABCA’s Team Academic Excellence Award honors high school and college programs coached by ABCA members that post a cumulative Grade Point Average over 3.0 on a 4.0 scale for the current academic year.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.