Nov. 26, 2012
LOGAN, Utah -
Utah State is one of 49 Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) teams to be recognized by the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) for academic success it was announced Monday.
Utah State was one of 31 institutions out of the 49 recognized who graduated 75 percent or more of their football student-athletes from its freshman class of 2005. USU was the only team from the Western Athletic Conference honored.
Stanford and Northwestern shared the AFCA Academic Achievement Award in 2012.
The Academic Achievement Award was established by the College Football Association in 1981. The award recognized the CFA-member Football Bowl Subdivision institution with the highest graduation rate among members of its football team. When the CFA disbanded in 1997, the AFCA stepped in to present the award and conduct a graduation rate survey that encompassed all members of the FBS.
The graduation success rate (GSR) is based on a six-year graduation window for student-athletes which is a change from the five-year window used by the CFA and AFCA. The GSR was developed by the NCAA as part of its academic reform initiative to more accurately assess the academic success of student-athletes. The GSR holds institutions accountable for transfer students, unlike the federal graduation rate. The GSR also accounts for midyear enrollees.
Under GSR calculation, institutions are not penalized for outgoing transfer students who leave in good academic standing. These outgoing transfers are passed to the receiving institution's GSR cohort. By counting incoming transfer students and midyear enrollees, the GSR increases the total number of student-athletes tracked for graduation by more than 37 percent.
Utah State (10-2, 6-0 WAC) just completed its most successful regular season in school history as it set single-season records for wins (10) and home wins (6), while recording its first outright league championship since 1936 and its 11th in school history as it became the first team in USU history to post a 6-0 conference record.
Utah State, who officially joins the Mountain West Conference on July 1, 2013, concludes WAC play with an 11-game winning streak. Overall, USU has won each of its last six games this year to rank tied for the fifth-longest winning streak in school history and tied for the sixth-longest active winning streak in the nation. In all, Utah State has now won 15 of its last 18 games to rank as the best 18-game stretch in school history since the 1962-64 teams also won 15 of 18 games.
Nationally, Utah State is one of just 18 teams with 10 or more wins on the season and USU is one of just four teams across the country who have not lost a league game joining Ohio State (8-0) from the Big Ten and Kent State (8-0) and Northern Illinois (8-0) from the Mid-American Conference.
Utah State, who is ranked 20th in the nation in this week's Associated Press top 25 and 22nd in the ESPN/USA Today Coaches' poll, will conclude its 2012 season at the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl on Saturday, Dec. 15 at 2:30 p.m. (MT) against a team yet to be announced from the Mid-American Conference.
Utah State, who also played in the 2011 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl, is appearing in back-to-back bowl games for just the third time in school history joining the 1946 Raisin Bowl and 1947 Grape Bowl teams, and the 1960 Sun Bowl and 1961 Gotham Bowl teams. Overall, it is USU's eighth bowl appearance in school history.
Tickets for the 2012 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl are available at www.Idahotickets.com, by phone at (208) 426-4737, or at the Bronco Stadium ticket office.
For USU football ticket information, contact the USU Ticket Office at the Dee Glen Smith Spectrum, or by phone by calling 1-888-USTATE-1 or (435) 797-0305. Tickets can also be purchased 24 hours a day at www.UtahStateAggies.com.
Fans can follow the Aggie football program at twitter.com/USUFootball. Aggie fans can also follow the Utah State athletic program at twitter.com/USUAthletics or on facebook at Utah State University Athletics.
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