The 2014-15 University of Connecticut women's basketball team made the grade off the court as well.
The national champion Huskies have been recognized with the American Athletic Conference Academic Excellence Award for women's basketball as announced by commissioner Mike Aresco.
On Thursday, it was announced that nine of the 12 players on UConn's 2014-15 roster -- senior Kiah Stokes, juniors Breanna Stewart, Morgan Tuck, and Briana Pulido, sophomores Tierney Lawlor and Natalie Butler, and freshmen Courtney Ekmark, Kia Nurse, and Gabby Williams -- were named to the AAC all-academic team.
An Academic Excellence Award is furnished to the team, from all 21 of the AAC's sponsored sports, with the highest collective grade point averages during the 2014-15 year. The selections are made by the conference's Academic Affairs Committee. The winners were chosen based on the 2014-15 grade-point average of each student-athlete who appeared on an institution's roster as of the last contest of the championship segment in each conference-sponsored sport. The women's basketball team was the only UConn squad so honored.
The Huskies were one of five teams to win an AAC championship and an Academic Excellence Award, and the only one to win a national championship. UConn finished 38-1, sweeping the league regular season and tournament titles. The Huskies beat Notre Dame 63-53 on April 7 in Tampa, Florida, for their third straight NCAA championship and record 10th overall.
Other Academic Excellence Award winners were from Central Florida (men's basketball, football, softball), Cincinnati (baseball, women's tennis), Memphis (men's cross country, women's cross country, men's golf, women's golf, women's soccer), SMU (men's soccer, men's swimming and diving), South Florida (men's tennis, women's indoor track and field), Temple (women's rowing, women's volleyball), Tulane (women's swimming and diving, women's outdoor track and field), and Tulsa (men's indoor track and field, men's outdoor track and field).
UConn's 2015-16 AAC schedule will look somewhat familiar.
The Huskies' 18-game slate will include the same home-and-home series as last season -- versus Cincinnati, East Carolina, Memphis, SMU, South Florida, Temple, Tulane, and Tulsa -- with single games at home against Central Florida and at Houston. Last season, UCF did not play at UConn while the Huskies did not visit Houston.
UCF finished eighth in the AAC last season with a 5-13 league record while Houston was 11th and last with a 1-17 mark.
The 2015-16 season schedule is the second year of a two-year model.
The 2016 AAC tournament will be held March 4-7 at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut, with all 10 games to be telecast on the ESPN family of networks.
The AAC and the NCAA announced that basketball standouts Stokes of UConn and Jamie Kaplan of Tulane are the conference's nominees for the 2015 NCAA Woman of the Year Award. In its 25th year, the NCAA Woman of the Year award recognizes graduating female student-athletes for excellence in academics, athletics, community service and leadership.
Stokes and Kaplan are among a record 147 female student-athletes who have been named as 2015 NCAA Woman of the Year honorees by their respective conferences. They were chosen from a record 480 nominees of NCAA member institutions, spanning 18 sports and all three divisions.
Stokes was a member of three national championship teams at UConn and was chosen the 2015 AAC Defensive Player of the Year as she set UConn's single-season record with 147 blocked shots as a senior. She was a first-round pick by the New York Liberty in April's WNBA Draft and has helped the Liberty (12-6) hold first place in the Eastern Conference midway through the regular season.
The Marion, Iowa, native graduated from UConn's honors program with a degree in sport promotion. She was active in a number of community service efforts as an undergraduate, including a Thanksgiving food drive that delivered more than 3,500 items of food to the Hockanum Valley Community Council.
Kaplan was the AAC women's basketball scholar-athlete of the year and helped Tulane to an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament. A Melbourne, Florida, native, Kaplan graduated from Tulane with a degree in neuroscience. She was a Senior CLASS Award first-team All-America choice. She conducted concussion research on behalf of the National Football League Players Association as well as the Tulane Institute of Sports Medicine's Administration of Concussion Screening/Baseline Testing, and composed her honors thesis on comparing the effects of ADD/ADHD and mild traumatic brain injury on high school and collegiate athletes.
The NCAA Woman of the Year selection committee will next select the top 10 honorees in each division. These top 30 honorees will be announced in early September. The 2015 Woman of the Year will be announced Oct. 18.