Zags Top the Nation in Graduation Success Rate


Nov. 8, 2017

SPOKANE, Wash. -- Gonzaga student-athletes are graduating at a rate of 99 percent according to the latest Graduation Success Rate (GSR) numbers released by the NCAA this week, which is tied for the highest percentage in the nation.

The Zags, who are tied atop the country with Columbia, Dartmouth, Harvard, Loyola Chicago and Yale, have the top GSR in the West Coast Conference. For comparison, the NCAA average is 85 percent and the WCC average is 90 percent.

Eleven Gonzaga squads achieved perfect 100-percent GSR scores, including men's basketball for the first time in program history. Zags' women's cross country and track and field and women's golf` had a perfect 100-percent GSR for the 13th straight year, while GU women's tennis achieved the feat for the 12th straight year. Men's cross country and track and field (10 straight), men's tennis (nine straight), men's soccer (eight straight), women's soccer (seven straight, ninth time overall), and men's golf (six straight) all extended their impressive streaks of 100-percent GSR scores. Women's rowing had a perfect 100-percent GSR for the sixth time in program history.

Bulldog men's soccer was one of only 34 programs in the country to have a 100-percent GSR, and women's rowing was one of only 38 programs. Men's cross country and track and field (one of 56 programs) and men's basketball (one of 59 programs) were also among an elite small number.

All 13 of GU's countable programs finished above the national average in their respective sports. Men's Basketball achieved a 100 percent GSR score, 21 percentage points higher than the national average of 79 percent for the sport. Gonzaga women's volleyball had a 96 percent GSR (five percent above the NCAA GSR average) and Bulldog baseball had an 89 percent GSR (eight percent above the NCAA GSR average).

According to the NCAA, the Division I Board of Directors created the GSR in response to Division I college and university presidents who wanted data that more accurately reflected the mobility of college students than the federal graduation rate. The GSR formula removes from the rate student-athletes who leave school while academically eligible and includes student-athletes who transfer to a school after initially enrolling elsewhere. This calculation makes it a more complete and accurate look at student-athlete success.

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