KANSAS CITY – Taylor University recently had all 18 of its varsity athletics programs named as NAIA Scholar-Teams, tying Taylor with three other institutions for the top mark in the nation. That total also gave TU its third-straight year with all 18 teams earning Scholar-Team status.
The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics announced that 1,502 teams from around the nation had earned Scholar-Team honors by posting a team grade-point average of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale during the 2014-2015 academic year.
Taylor had all 18 teams post a GPA of 3.15 or higher and tied with Olivet Nazarene, Biola and Campbellsville for the highest number of Scholar-Teams in the nation. TU was the lone school among that group to have all of its programs garner Scholar-Team recognition.
In addition to leading the nation with 18 Scholar-Teams, TU placed three teams inside the top-30 programs in the NAIA and four in the top-100. Taylor's men's golf program turned in the 17th-highest team GPA out of the 1,502 teams to be honored with a 3.73 mark, while women's basketball (3.70) ranked 21st, women's cross country (3.69) was 29th and women's golf (3.63) ranked 79th.
Taylor also saw its women's basketball program (3.70) post the highest team GPA in the NAIA among all NAIA Division I and II women's basketball programs. The top-ranking marked the third-straight year that the women's basketball team has ranked among the top-three in the nation, as the team also posted the top mark in 2012-2013 and the third-highest in 2013-2014.
Three other TU teams ranked inside the top-five on the list for their respective sports, with men's golf (3.73) finishing third, and baseball (3.41) and football (3.15) ranking fourth.
A total of 15 TU teams ranked among the top-25 GPA's in their respective sports, with 10 Trojan teams ranking inside the top-10. The academic excellence was demonstrated further with 14-of-18 teams ranking among the top-three in the Crossroads League or Mid-States Football Association for their sport and men's golf (3.73), women's basketball (3.70), women's indoor track and field (3.54), baseball (3.41) and men's indoor track and field (3.34) leading the league in team GPA for their sport.
Taylor has now seen each of its 18 teams named as NAIA Scholar-Teams for three-straight years. TU has led the nation in percentage of teams to earn the honor in each of those three years, while ranking No. 2 in 2012-2013, No. 3 in 2013-2014 and No. 1 in 2014-2015 in total number of Scholar-Teams.
Taylor's 2014-2015 NAIA Scholar-Teams
Men's Golf – 3.73
Women's Basketball – 3.70
Women's Cross Country – 3.69
Women's Golf – 3.63
Volleyball – 3.56
Women's Tennis – 3.56
Women's Indoor Track and Field – 3.54
Women's Outdoor Track and Field – 3.53
Men's Cross Country – 3.50
Softball – 3.49
Women's Soccer – 3.46
Baseball – 3.41
Men's Outdoor Track and Field – 3.36
Men's Indoor Track and Field – 3.34
Men's Basketball – 3.28
Men's Soccer – 3.19
Men's Tennis – 3.18
Football – 3.15