WMU News

Football Broncos among nation's best in graduation rates

July 23, 2002

KALAMAZOO -- The Western Michigan University football team was recently recognized by the American Football Coaches Association for its success in graduating student-athletes.

In a survey conducted by the AFCA, Western Michigan was one of nine schools that posted a graduation rate of 90 percent or better over a five-year period. The survey focused on scholarship athletes who enrolled as freshmen or transfers during the 1996-97 academic year and included data collected from 80 Division I programs.

Northwestern University earned the AFCA's 2002 Academic Achievement Award with a 100 percent graduation rate. The eight other schools in the 90 percent group are Boston College, Duke University, the University of Notre Dame, the University of Nebraska, Pennsylvania State University, Rice University, Vanderbilt University and WMU.

"This recognition is a very positive reflection on Coach Darnell, the student-athletes in our football program, and this University," said Jeff Stone, WMU associate athletic director who oversees academic services.

In 2001, Western Michigan was among 28 schools to receive honorable mention from the AFCA by posting a graduation rate of 70 percent or better over a five-year period beginning in 1995-96.

During the 2001-02 academic year, 51 Bronco football players recorded semester grade-point averages of 3.00 or better. In addition, 15 players were named to the Mid-American Conference Football Honor Roll and five players made the MAC All-Academic Team.

Media contact: Daniel Jankowski, 269 387-4138, daniel.jankowski@wmich.edu

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