Record 79 student-athletes earn Winter Academic All-Big Ten honors

March 29, 2016

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- For the fourth consecutive year, a record number of Penn State student-athletes have earned Winter Academic All-Big Ten accolades, with 79 honorees this year among eight sports. The previous school record was 70, set last year.

Two of Penn State’s 79 honorees have perfect 4.0 grade point averages -- men’s gymnast Noah Roberson and wrestler Devon Van Cura. NCAA individual wrestling champions Nico Megaludis and Zain Retherford also were among the Nittany Lions’ Academic All-Big Ten honorees.

Penn State led the conference in Academic All-Big Ten winter honorees in women’s swimming and diving (23) and men’s hockey (16), as well as the 2016 NCAA wrestling championship team (14, tied with Ohio State).

Combined with last fall’s 80 honorees, Penn State has 159 Academic All-Big Ten honorees so far this year, its second highest total in school history through the winter sports season (164 in 2012-13).

Penn State leads all conference institutions with 5,436 Academic All-Big Ten honorees since 1991-92, its first year of competition in some Big Ten sports. Ohio State is second with 5,308 over the past 25 years.

Since men’s and women’s hockey became varsity sports in 2012-13, Penn State has broken its record high for Academic All-Big Ten honorees during the winter sports season four consecutive years, going from 64 to 79, an increase of 19 percent.

To be eligible for Academic All-Big Ten consideration, 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. Last year, Penn State had a total of 277 Academic All-Big Ten honorees, its second-highest total all-time. The school record is 296 honorees, set in 2012-13.

Student-athletes with a cumulative grade-point average of 3.0 or higher from the Penn State men's and women's fencing, women's ice hockey and men’s volleyball teams will be recognized in the spring and at-large sport categories later this year.

Overall, the Big Ten Conference recognized a total of 780 students competing in winter sports who have been named to the Academic All-Conference. The list of honorees features 41 men’s and 69 women’s basketball players, 64 men’s and 62 women’s gymnasts, 72 men’s hockey players, 157 men’s and 203 women’s swimmers and divers and 112 wrestlers.

Last Updated March 31, 2016