SEARCY - The 2016 Harding baseball team was one of just 20 NCAA Division II programs and the only team in the Great American Conference to receive the American Baseball Coaches Association Team Academic Excellence Award on Tuesday.
Harding's squad had a cumulative GPA of 3.19 for the 2015-16 school year.
"We are extremely proud to recognize the academic accomplishments of so many of our member coaches' programs this year," said ABCA Executive Director Craig Keilitz. "This award highlights our coaches' commitment to developing student-athletes that excel both on and off the field, and we're proud of these student-athletes for their success in the classroom."
Teams from NCAA Divisions I, II and III, junior college and high school were honored. The new award was announced in May and the deadline for teams to be nominated was July 15.
In order to qualify for the ABCA Team Academic Excellence Award, programs must meet the following criteria:
The American Baseball Coaches Association has a long tradition of recognizing the achievements of baseball coaches and student-athletes. The ABCA/Rawlings All-America Teams are the nation's oldest, founded in 1949, and the ABCA's awards program also includes the ABCA/Rawlings All-Region Awards, the ABCA/Diamond Regional & National Coaches of the Year and several other major awards such as the ABCA Hall of Fame and the ABCA/Wilson Lefty Gomez Award.