DAVIS, Calif. -
When UC Davis made the move to National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I beginning in 2003, the university promised that academic achievement would remain at the forefront of its athletics program goals.
Figures released by the NCAA on Thursday prove that commitment, showing that 87 percent of Aggie student-athletes who entered college between 2003 to 2006 earned their undergraduate degrees. That's the highest NCAA Graduation Success Rate for any of the nine current members of the Big West Conference.
Additionally, seven Aggie teams had perfect graduation success rates of 100 percent while men's basketball was 91 percent, also best in the Big West.
"Academic excellence is a foundation of our athletics program and the primary focus for our student-athletes. UC Davis is a top 10 public university and excellence in the classroom is a top priority for our student-athletes, just as it is for the entire student body," said Terry Tumey, director of athletics. "We're proud our student-athletes are reaching their academic goals while also working hard to represent UC Davis in athletics competition."
Nationally, 82 percent of student-athletes who started college in 2006 went on to earn their degrees while 81 percent who began from 2003 to 2006 did so. Aggie student-athletes who began in 2003-06 did so during UC Davis' four-year reclassification period as UC Davis ramped up its level of competition.
"This is one of the first groups of student-athletes who faced the challenges of consistent NCAA Division I competition," Tumey said. "More importantly, they earned an undergraduate degree from one of the top academic institutions in the country. I applaud their commitment to excellence in all areas of being a student-athlete."
Aggie women's teams that earned perfect GSR scores were golf, gymnastics, lacrosse, soccer, volleyball and water polo. Men's water polo was also at 100 percent. Women's swimming (95 pct.) and women's basketball (94 pct.) also had high rates as did men's cross country and track and field (95 pct.), and men's tennis (93 pct.).