College to Career

Panthers excel in the academics

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Georgia State student-athletes have received numerous accolades for their efforts in the classroom. This year’s program landed 42 athletes on the President’s List, a distinction for students with a GPA of 4.0 or above, while 81 made the Dean’s List (3.5-3.99). 73 athletes made the Athletic Director’s Honor Roll with a GPA between 3.0 and 3.49.

The combined GPA for all sports is a 3.15 for the 2017-18 academic year. The cumulative GPA for the department is even higher, a 3.24.

Women have lead the way this year with eight of the top 10 GPAs and a majority of President’s List selections.

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Of the 42 student-athletes on the President’s List, 34 are female athletes, 11 are seniors and 13 are international students.

Women’s programs have the advantage of some teams not having male counterparts. Beach volleyball, volleyball and cross country only have women’s teams so there are more female programs than men’s.

Most men’s teams still performed very well in the classroom. Men’s golf and soccer hold the highest GPAs, but baseball, tennis and football each had players that were named to Google Cloud Academic All-District® teams by the College Sports Information Directors of America. Georgia State had a school-record 15 CoSIDa Google Cloud Academic All-District® honorees this year from seven different sports.

The honorees include: Angela Alonso (track and field/cross country), Lotte Meyberg ( track and field/ cross country),Alex Herrmann (golf), Reagan Morgan (softball), Brenna Skalski (softball), Kristin Hawkins (softball), Ivie Drake (softball), Justin Jones (baseball), Will Kilgore, (baseball), Chandon Sullivan, (football), Gabe Mobley, (football), Julien Laurent, (football), Max Hemmings, (men’s soccer), Frank Rosenwald (men’s soccer), Kylie Ruffule (women’s soccer).


Men’s golf held the highest team GPA last year and leads men’s teams this year with a 3.64. Head coach Joe Inman spoke on the team’s success.

“The key to academic success for our team is understand the balance between student and athlete. To be successful in this world our student-athletes know that you must be successful in both areas. Our team has always bought into that concept and I think that is why we continue to do so well in the classroom as well as on the course,” said Inman.

Women’s golf has the the third highest GPA at 3.68. Nine of the team’s 10 players received academic honors.

“Our team takes great pride in our work both on and off the golf course. As hard as our student-athletes work on the course, they work even harder in the classroom. Academics has always been extremely important to me for what it can do for a student in the future. Our team buys into that and is proud to excel in the classroom,” said head coach Cathy Mant.

Women’s golf was also recognized for its perfect Academic Progress Rate (APR) of 1,000. The APR is a measurement of academic achievement that uses graduation, retention and eligibility rates to score academic performance. Georgia State women’s golf earned a perfect score and ranked in the top 10 percent in the country for the second consecutive year.


Men’s soccer finished the year with a 3.38 with 19 of the 26 athletes receiving academic honors.

Women’s soccer finished with a 3.54. While 21 of the 28 women on the roster received honors, 10 made the Dean’s List and seven placed on the President’s List. Senior Kylie Ruffle received praise from athletic director Charlie Cobb for earning the Kell award with a 4.21 GPA, the highest of any Georgia State graduate. In the State of the Panthers for June 2018 Cobb stated:

“Women’s soccer player Kylie Ruffule was recognized with the Kell Award for having the highest GPA of any Georgia State graduate. Beach Volleyball student-athlete Sarah Agnew was awarded Hamilton Trotter Award, the highest student leadership award presented at Georgia State. Thus, the two highest graduation awards were earned by student-athletes, which are amazing accomplishments by both great student-athletes.“


Academic success depends largely on the work of the players and motivation from the coaches, but there are other tools and resources that help too. Georgia State’s team of academic coordinators and advisors help keep student-athletes focused and organized.

“Jesse Rappole has played a monumental role in their academic success with regard to study habits and time management. They set a goal each semester and work toward it daily,” said beach volleyball head coach Beth Van Fleet.

Volleyball head coach Sally Polhamus also praised the academic staff for their contribution to student success.

“During the recruiting process and once our players step on campus they understand the expectations we have to excel on the court and in the classroom. This success comes from preparation, consistency, communication and determination. Along with the structure and support of our incredible academic staff Jessica Summey and Brad Horton,” said Polhamus. “Our players have a goal to win the top academic honor for volleyball in the Sun Belt and last year we achieved that goal.”

Georgia State volleyball earned a 3.62 GPA for spring semester. There were 12 players that received academic honors while four made it onto the President’s List.

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