The Valparaiso University men’s golf team was recognized this week as the Golf Coaches Association of America announced its 2018-2019 team academic award winners.
Valpo was once again named a GCAA All-Academic Team, an honor bestowed upon teams that earn a GPA of 3.0 or above. This marks the ninth consecutive year Valpo has earned all-academic distinction.
“We are very grateful for the recognition from the GCAA and this award continues to be an important part of our team identity,” head coach Dave Gring said. “Every year, each member of our team identifies their goals when we start the season - golf, academic and personal. On the academic side, our guys are aggressive with their goals since we have won a national academic championship and we aspire to be one of the top teams in the country. The guys hold each other accountable and they really push one another to perform well in the classroom, which is also extremely competitive. Our team culture is strong and it’s important to our players to be very competitive on the golf course and in the classrooms.”
Men’s golf was also one of seven Valpo programs to earn the NCAA Public Recognition Award for outstanding academic performance this season. The team’s lone senior, Mitchell Wittmann (Kaukauna, Wis. / Kaukauna), set the tone academically by earning MVC Scholar-Athlete First Team honors with a 3.97 GPA in finance.
“As a Division I program, our coaching staff asks a lot of our players,” Gring said. “These men spend many hours in practice, workouts, travel, competitive tournaments and more. Besides golf, they have their friendships, extra-curricular clubs, intramural sports, fraternities and more. I continue to marvel at the balance that these guys achieve in executing all of this and attaining excellent grades in their classes.”
On the course, Valpo finished the 2018-19 season with a scoring average that ranked second in program history. The bulk of the team will be back for the 2019-2020 campaign.
“We will celebrate this achievement and look forward to more success in the classroom this coming year,” Gring said. “Our coaching staff has tremendous respect for each one of these guys and it continues to be a blessing to work with such fine young men.”