Athletes Score as Students

A common misperception is that athletes at the University of Tampa fail to perform inside of the classroom. The statistics, however, show that UT student-athletes have had the same type of success inside the classroom as they have had on the athletic fields in the past year.

According to Sports Information Director Tom Kolbe, UT student-athletes had a cumulative grade point average above a 3.0 last year.

UT student-athletes had a 65 percent graduation rate last year while the rest of UT students graduated at a 55-percent rate.

In 2006, the Spartans won two national championships, one in baseball and one in volleyball. Although Tampa continues to be one of the top Division II schools athletically, the majority of student-athletes at UT do not go on to play professionally, which could be one of the main reasons athletes at UT seem to be concentrating on academics and excelling in the classroom.

Junior Margeaux Sinibaldi was named an All-American on the 2006 national championship volleyball team. Sinibaldi was dominant on the volleyball court and has been equally impressive in the classroom, boasting a 3.93 grade point average in her three years at UT. Sinibaldi knows just how important an education is considering that there is little opportunity to play professional volleyball after college.

“Student-athletes know that in order to do anything they need a degree, and most of us can not rely on our athletic abilities to make a living,” Sinibaldi said.

Sinibaldi thinks that it’s not just the fear that most student-athletes will not be able to play professionally that drives them to work hard in the classroom, but that being an athlete creates a drive in them that carries over into the classroom.

“I believe that being an athlete instills in us a work ethic that we take into the classroom,” said Sinibaldi.

Many of UT’s best student-athletes agree with Sinibaldi that the work ethic that they put into their sport carries over into the classroom. Nicole Murphy was a vital part of the women’s soccer team that advanced to the final four last year. Murphy, a junior and biology major with a pre-professional concentration, has a 3.8 grade point average.

Murphy thinks student-athletes perform well academically because they have to manage their time well and find time to study even if it means giving up rare free time.

“I think that

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