May 21st, 2018
Golf team member Parker Austin and men's tennis team members Ryan LaCombe and Tyler Shima earned 2017-18 Google Cloud Academic All-District® First-Team selections for their combined performances on the playing field and in the classroom.
The Men's At-Large Team, selected by CoSIDA, recognizes the nation's top student-athletes.
Austin, sophomore from Derby, is the second Thresher golfer in program history to earn this award, following Brian Krehbiel who was recognized with the award last season. Austin turned in three different Top-10 finishes this season and broke four program course records this spring.
LaCombe, sophomore from Abilene, and Shima, senior from Topeka, are believed to be the first members of the Bethel men's tennis team to earn this award. LaCombe completed the season 19-18 and earned KCAC Player of the Week recognition. Shima went 14-13 almost exclusively from #4 singles. Both played key roles in a team that more than tripled their team wins from a season ago and qualified for the KCAC postseason for the first time in four years.
The trio of Parker Austin, Ryan LaCombe, and Tyler Shima now move into a pool of 41 Academic All-District® honorees, who will be selected for Academic All-America® status June 11, potentially a first for a Bethel athlete. The CoSIDA Academic All-America® program, which covers all major collegiate sports, has been functioning since 1952 with the Google Cloud Academic All-District® Men's At-Large Team beginning in 1982.
To see a complete list of the Google Cloud Academic All-District® Men's At-Large Team, click here.
About the CoSIDA Academic All-America® Program
The College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) began the distinguished Academic All-America® program in 1952, and since then, has honored thousands of deserving student-athletes from numerous sports across all divisions with these elite Academic All-America® scholar-athlete honors.
Currently, CoSIDA sponsors Academic All-America® programs for men's soccer, women's soccer, football, volleyball, men's basketball, women's basketball, baseball, softball and men's and women's track and field/cross country. Many other sports are eligible through the At-Large program.
The Academic All-America® program is comprised of four divisional teams, with student-athletes being honored separately in NCAA Division I, Division II and Division III. The College Division team is comprised of NAIA, Canadian and two-year student-athletes. This format began in the 2011-12 academic year. Previously there were two teams - University Division (NCAA D1) and a College Division (all others).
Both the Academic All-America® program and the Hall of Fame are nominated and voted upon exclusively by members of CoSIDA.
In 2016-17, the program saw a record 17,632 nominations with 3,599 individuals being honored with Academic All-District® honors and 1,463 student-athletes being named Academic All-America®. The average GPA of the 48 Academic All-America® of the Year recipients was a staggering 3.94.