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Bear Foundation Registers Record-Breaking Year




July 2, 2012


WACO, Texas - For the eighth consecutive year, the Baylor Bear Foundation will provide a record-breaking gift to Baylor Athletics, as the generosity of nearly 3,000 members allowed it to raise more than $8.2 million in scholarship support for the school's 19-sport intercollegiate athletics program during the 2011-12 fiscal year.

"This year's record-breaking fund drive is a credit to our generous and loyal donors, the diligence of our volunteers and the outstanding work of the Bear Foundation staff. It is not a coincidence that our donor numbers and fundraising totals significantly increased during the Year of the Bear," said Baylor Director of Athletics Ian McCaw. "With the growing support of Baylor Nation and the momentum emanating from this year's success, Baylor Athletics is positioned for another special year in 2012-13."

For the most-recent fiscal year, which ended May 31, the Bear Foundation contributed a record $8.2 million for scholarship support of Baylor's 19 intercollegiate programs through annual giving ($6.0 million), endowment interest ($1.3 million) and sky box revenues ($832,195). The BBF's 2011-12 contribution is an increase of more than $600,000 over its 2010-11 then-record gift of $7.6 million, and its annual giving total was also a Foundation record. The Bear Foundation's year-end totals do not reflect any capital gifts received during the year.

"This record-breaking total was a complete team effort by the Baylor Nation," said Baylor Executive Associate Athletics Director/Development Doug Smith. "Our student-athletes performed to the best of their abilities under outstanding leadership from our coaches and we enjoyed tremendous administrative support in making 2011-12 The Year of the Bear.

"Then of course, our donors made it all possible by contributing at record levels," he added. "The Bear Foundation thanks everyone who participated in making this an `Unbelievable, believable,' fund-raising year for Baylor Athletics."

Over the last eight years, the Bear Foundation's annual support of scholarships for Baylor's student-athletes has more than doubled, from $3.312 million in 2004-05 to 2011-12's record-breaking total. The Bear Foundation topped the $4 million mark for the first time in 2006-07, reached $5 million the following year (2007-08), topped $6 million for the first time in 2008-09 and cleared the $7 million threshold in 2009-10 before surpassing the $8 million mark this past year. Annual giving has grown from $2.565 million in 2004-05 to more than $6.06 million during the recently completed academic year.

The 2011-12 academic year will go down as arguably the finest in Baylor athletics history, as all 19 of its teams reached postseason play for the first time in school history, and its football, men's basketball, women's basketball and baseball teams combined to register an NCAA single-season record 129 victories (against 28 losses, for an .827 winning percentage). BU's win total in football, men's and women's basketball also established a new NCAA single-season standard (80-11, .822) with the football team winning a bowl game for the first time since 1992, men's basketball reaching the Elite Eight for the second time in three seasons and the Lady Bears claiming their second NCAA title in seven seasons en route to becoming the first collegiate basketball team, men's or women's, to finish the season 40-0.

One of just two schools nationally to have every sponsored sport advance to the postseason in 2011-12, Baylor finished 25th in the 2011-12 NACDA Directors' Cup standings. BU joined Florida and Ohio State as the only institutions to win a football bowl game, reach the Elite Eight in men's basketball and the Final Four in women's basketball. All-told, Baylor produced a school-record 19 postseason squads (after having 14 postseason entrants in each of the previous three seasons), two national team championships, three Big 12 Conference championship teams (two regular season and one tournament crown) and every squad registered a winning record in the same season for the second straight year.

Baylor tied or broke its single-season win totals in football (10, tied), men's basketball (30) and women's basketball (40) during the recently completed season, while its 49 baseball victories were just one off the school standard in that sport. Individually, Robert Griffin III became Baylor's first-ever Heisman Trophy winner and Brittney Griner received the Honda Cup as the Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year, marking the first time an institution produced both award winners in the same academic year.

In the classroom, Baylor student-athletes continued to excel in 2011-12, too. A school-record 630 student-athletes were named to the Big 12's 2011-12 Commissioner's Honor Rolls, while a Baylor-record 149 student-athletes earned Academic All-Big 12 honors and a record 252 were named to Baylor's Deans List. In addition, Baylor had eight Capital One Academic All-District honorees in four sports, including four who went on to earn 2011-12 Academic All-America honors, and one NCAA Elite 88 Award winner.

Individuals looking to join the Baylor Bear Foundation or purchase premium season tickets to football, men's basketball or women's basketball games, may call the Foundation office at 254.710.2582.