MANHEIM, Pa. – The Bucknell wrestling team captured a National Wrestling Coaches Association (NWCA) Team Academic Award for being among the top-30 programs nationally in team grade point average, the organization announced Thursday morning.
In addition, Drew Phipps earned his first career spot on the NWCA All-Academic Team for his performance on the mat and in the classroom during the 2017-18 campaign.
As a team, the Bison ranked 25th with a 3.14 GPA. They have now been slotted in the national 30 in four of the past five years.
Phipps was one of 155 student-athletes who was honored on the NWCA All-Academic Team. To be eligible for this award, a wrestler had to either qualify for the NCAA Championships or win at least 60 percent of his bouts while competing in at least 60 percent of his team's schedule.
Phipps enjoyed a breakout sophomore season, finishing second only to NCAA qualifier Tyler Smith in overall victories (22), dual victories (11), EIWA dual victories (7) and technical falls (2). He finished eighth in the 184-pound weight class at his first EIWA Championships, missing earning one of the conference's auto bids to the NCAA Championships by one place.
Phipps is Bucknell's eighth NWCA All-Academic Team member and fourth since the program was reinstated ahead of the 2006-07 season. Paul Petrov, a 2016 graduate, captured this award three times while Jay Hahn was recognized in 2011 and Garrett Hoffman in 2017. In 1995, Bobby Ferraro, Robert Renn, Ty Rothermel and Michael Rush were named to the squad.
The team GPA was determined using a system that included 12 student-athletes from each program. A total of 10 had to be wrestlers who competed in their NCAA tournament conference qualifier.
Harvard was the top team in the NWCA All-Academic Team standings for the fifth time in the past six years. The EIWA had eight of its 16 member schools listed in the Top 30, followed by the MAC with six teams.