Record 299 student-athletes earn Academic All-Big Ten honors in 2015-16

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Penn State student-athletes broke three school Academic All-Big Ten records in 2015-16, highlighted by a new high of 299 honorees for the year. A record 140 spring/at-large Academic honorees boosted the Nittany Lions to the new yearly mark.

The previous yearly high was 296 Academic All-Big Ten honorees in 2012-13 and this year’s total was 22 higher than 2014-15’s total of 277. Penn State’s 299 high achievers this year ranked No. 2 in the Big Ten.

Penn State leads all Big Ten institutions with 5,576 Academic all-conference honorees since 1991-92, its first year of competition in some Big Ten sports. Ohio State is next with 5,495 over the past 25 years.

The 140 Nittany Lion spring/at-large Academic All-Big Ten honorees bested the previous mark of 138 in 2013-14 and is an increase of five from last year’s total of 135. A school record 79 Nittany Lions garnered Academic All-Big Ten accolades for the winter sports, easily surpassing the previous mark of 70. There were 80 Penn State honorees among the fall teams.

Penn State Highest Academic All-Big Ten Yearly Totals
(3.0 GPA and a letter winner):
2015-16 - 299
2012-13 - 296
2013-14 - 285
2014-15 - 277

To be eligible for Academic All-Big Ten selection, student-athletes must be letter winners who are in at least their second academic year at their institution and carry a cumulative grade-point average of 3.0 or higher.

The women’s hockey team led the way among Penn State’s spring/at-large sports with 21 Academic All-Big Ten honorees and the women’s track and field squad was next with 18. The women’s lacrosse team, which advanced to the 2016 NCAA semifinals, had 15 honorees and the men’s lacrosse and softball squads had 13.

The Penn State men’s tennis team led the conference with its eight Academic All-Big Ten selections, women’s tennis led with its 10 honorees and women’s hockey program led the league with its 21 academic all-conference honorees.

Senior women’s golf student-athlete Halley Morrell was recognized for earning a cumulative 4.0 grade point average. Morrell was the conference’s only women’s golfer with a perfect GPA.

Penn State Highest Academic All-Big Ten Spring/At-Large Totals
(3.0 GPA and a letter winner):
2015-16 – 140
2013-14 - 138
2014-15 - 135
2012-13 - 132

The Big Ten Conference recognized a total of 1,537 students competing in spring and at-large sports who have been named to the Academic All-Conference team.

The conference office will also present the Distinguished Scholar Award in July. Students eligible for the Distinguished Scholar Award must be letter winners in at least their second year in residence at their institution. Qualifying students must have earned a GPA of 3.7 or higher for the current academic year, excluding summer school. The Big Ten Distinguished Scholar Award was established by conference Faculty Representatives as an addition to the conference’s Academic All-Big Ten program.

Last Updated June 28, 2016