Reporter’s Notebook: Student-athletes make academic strides

by Tyler Gieseke

The University of Minnesota’s student-athletes earned higher marks this year than they have in the past.

As of spring semester 2014, the average GPA for the University’s student-athletes was a 3.22, according to docket materials from the Board of Regents’ July 9 meeting.

That score is higher than it was both a semester and a year earlier, according to the Board of Regents documents.

“We’re very excited about that,” University athletics director Norwood Teague said at the meeting. Teague presented the average GPA to the board as part of the Annual Intercollegiate Athletics Report.

Also, the University was fourth place among Bowl Championship Series colleges with the highest percentage of teams earning Academic Progress Rate awards, according to the report. Only Northwestern University, the University of Notre Dame and Duke University — which are all private institutions — ranked ahead of the University of Minnesota, making it the highest-ranking public university.

Other parts of the report noted that Gophers athletics includes 25 programs, more than 750 student-athletes and has a total budget of $95.7 million for the current fiscal year.