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OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. -- A total of 36 students across five fall sports earned recognition from the Sooner Athletic Conference on Wednesday (Feb. 1) by being named to the Academic All-Conference team.

To be eligible for Academic All-Sooner Athletic selection, student-athletes must be letterwinners who are in at least their second academic year at their institution and carry a cumulative grade-point average of 3.25 or higher over the previous two semesters.

Women's cross country led all SAC institutions with eight honorees while volleyball's eight honorees tied for the most. JBU's 36 total honorees showed a 12.5 percent increase over the fall of 2015 and a nine percent jump in 2014. There were 17 repeat recipients and 19 newcomers to the honor listing.

"I am so proud of our student-athletes and their commitment to excellence in the classroom," said director of athletics Robyn Daugherty. "In a world where athletic performance overshadows academic achievement, it is exciting to me to see these 36 student-athletes at a 3.25 or higher, especially at an institution where academics are very challenging."

The conference office also awards Team Academic All-Sooner Athletic distinctions and the Commissioner's Honor Roll, both to be presented at the end of the academic year. Teams that earn a cumulative 3.0 over the course of the academic year after averaging the GPAs of all letterwinners will earn Team Academic All-Sooner Athletic accolades while individual student-athletes that carry a cumulative 3.0 GPA over the previous two semesters garner a slot on the Commissioner's Honor Roll. Both distinctions are granted in June.

All SAC academic awards are presented by Cypress Risk Management, an Omaha, Neb., based insurance agency that specializes in providing customized solutions for collegiate student health and athletic accident insurance. The organization currently insures over 500,000 students nationwide and is already engaged with several other NAIA conferences in similar type of partnerships. Cypress Risk Management's partnership with the SAC gives it exclusive sponsorship to the academic awards program that covers the 13 men's and women's NAIA-sanctioned sports the conference offers.

John Brown Academic All-Sooner Athletic Honorees

Men's Cross Country
Thomas Bearden*
Jacob Benjamin
Justin Riffel*
Aaron Stafford*
Jacob Synek

Women's Cross Country
Carly Coney
Kaitlyn Collier*
Abigail Danley*
Erin Haley*
Abbie Melby
Haley Newcomb
Jennifer Poole*
Reagan Roth

Men's Soccer
Connor Georgopulos*
Kelvin Omondi
James Pollard
Collin Smith*
Ryan Williams
Santiago Vanegas

Women's Soccer
Sarah Abbott*
Annika Bos
Anna Brown
Sara Frey*
Kathryn Huff
Sara Lachance*
Anne Metz*
Aspen Robinson
Samantha Weber*

Alyssa Arnold*
Brittany Ayers
Elizabeth Bjornsen
Beth Brankle*
Karis Buff
Bethany Maddox
Molli Pugh*
Bailey Sager

* Denotes repeat honoree

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