Fraser Valley (Dan Kinvig) – The University of the Fraser Valley Cascades combined for a record-shattering performance in the classroom in 2020-21, as 66 student-athletes achieved benchmarks for high academic achievement.
Among that group was a UFV-record 39 student-athletes who were recognized as U SPORTS Academic All-Canadians.
The U SPORTS Academic All-Canadian award recognizes individuals who achieve an academic standing of 80 per cent or better (3.67 on the UFV grade-point average scale) while playing on one of their university’s U SPORTS varsity teams. The Cascades’ U SPORTS offerings include basketball, soccer and volleyball.
The previous AAC record for the UFV athletic department was 18, established in 2019-20. While the men’s and women’s volleyball teams’ move up to U SPORTS last year contributed to the sharp increase in AAC recipients, it’s worth noting that the Cascades’ basketball and soccer recipients totalled 29, meaning that it would have been a record-setting AAC year even without the addition of volleyball.
Additionally, Cascades Academic Awards were bestowed on 27 athletes who posted a 3.5 GPA or better, but did not fall under U SPORTS Academic All-Canadian award criteria. This includes athletes in sports that aren’t under the U SPORTS umbrella (golf, rugby sevens, baseball and rowing); athletes from U SPORTS teams who did not qualify for the national awards due to redshirting; and any others who exceeded a 3.5 GPA.
“I’m immensely proud of what our student-athletes have been able to accomplish academically,” enthused Steve Tuckwood, UFV director of athletics and campus recreation. “They faced a great deal of adversity in 2020-21 amidst COVID-19, with little to no opportunity to compete in their respective sports. Yet they were able to put that frustration aside, refocus, and channel their efforts into their studies, and the results speak for themselves.”
Award recipients are as follows:
U SPORTS Academic All-Canadians
Cascades Academic Award
Women’s Rugby Sevens
Mackenzie de Beer
On Thursday, the winners of the Cascades’ three major academic awards will be announced: Women’s academic athlete of the year, men’s academic athlete of the year, and the President’s Shield for top team GPA.