Mercyhurst tops PSAC with scholar-athletes

Daniel Leonard, Staff writer

It was announced that Mercyhurst University has produced a conference-high 308 Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) Scholar-Athletes for the 2017-18 academic year.

This number was also part of a conference-record 3,053 students that earned scholar-athlete status from the league’s 18 institutions.  “I think we are really unique because the PSAC is mainly full of state schools, with a couple of private schools in it,” said assistant volleyball coach Jenell Patton. “People might think that our classes are easy, but I think the reality is that our student-athletes are extremely disciplined, on the court and off the court, and that’s partially why they are so successful academically.”

A student-athlete must have a 3.25 grade point average during their collegiate careers to earn the PSAC Scholar-Athlete status.   “The fact that so many Mercyhurst athletes have been awarded the status provides proof of their own hard work as well as the dedication of professors, coaches and advisers to helping them,” said Mercyhurst Athletic Director Bradley Davis. “They are not just primed to succeed on the field but also in the classroom as well.”

Patton also mentioned that time management is a big factor for a student athlete.  Some teams provide study halls for athletes, and some coaches have been known to spend extra time with their athletes to ensure their success.  “Overall, I think as a department we have coaches who understand the importance of the student-athlete and we try to recruit students who will be successful as student-athletes on our campus,” said Patton. “I think it starts with the recruiting process of what kind of people will be a good fit for our institution.”