July 25, 2011
Baylor's men's tennis team was the lone Big 12 men's team recognized by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) for academic achievement in the 2011 season. In addition, five players earned ITA Scholar-Athlete status.
During the spring semester, the Bears posted an all-time GPA best 3.58 GPA. Julian Bley, Chris Gordon, Sergio Ramirez, Jordan Rux and Robert Verzaal were all honored as ITA Scholar-Athletes.
To qualify for the scholar-athlete honor, a player must meet the following criteria:
- Be a varsity letterwinner;
- Have a grade point average of at least 3.50 (on a 4.0 scale) for the current academic year;
- Have been rolled at their present school for at least two semesters
In addition to excelling in the classroom, the Bears were highly successful on the court in 2011. The team finished No. 6 in the final ITA rankings of the 2011 season and achieved the highest final team ranking since 2007 when the squad was listed at No. 4.
Baylor, at 22-5 on the year, earned a spot in the final rankings among the nation's top eight teams for the 10th straight year and the top 10 for the 12th time in the last 13 years. Since 2003, the Bears have advanced to at least the quarterfinals of the NCAA Championships and claimed the national championship in 2004, advanced to the finals in '05 and the semifinals in '06 and '07.
The Bears' No. 6 ranking keeps BU as the top collegiate men's tennis program over the last 10 years with an average ranking during that time of 5.0.