Six Lehigh wrestlers were honored with the Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association’s (EIWA) Academic Achievement Award, which is given to conference wrestlers who maintain either a 3.2 cumulative GPA while participating in the EIWA Championship, or maintain a 3.0 cumulative GPA and qualify for the NCAA Championship through the EIWA.
Sixth-year senior Jordan Wood, seniors Josh Humphreys, Brian Meyer and AJ Burkhart, junior Jake Logan and sophomore Sheldon Seymour rounded out the list for the Mountain Hawks receiving this distinction.
Logan said being on a Division I team that travels all over the country to compete in wrestling matches in places like Arizona, Florida, Oklahoma and Oregon means sacrificing a large portion of time spent keeping up with classes and other academic commitments.
To help him achieve academic success, Logan said he makes detailed weekly schedules of all his responsibilities to help visualize what needs to be done and when.
“The best thing a student-athlete can do is stay as organized and be as communicative as possible,” Logan said.
Logan said working with teachers and other campus staff is key to remaining organized. He said using the support systems offered to athletes at Lehigh is crucial in the effort to balance everything all at once.
Logan said being a student-athlete means more than finding time between daily practices and workout sessions to do assignments and prepare for exams – it means managing academic work while being away at matches and coordinating with professors and peers in a timely manner to avoid needing to cram for a test the night before.
“It’s up to me to be accountable and complete my work in advance or do it right before the deadline after a long day of travel,” Logan said. “It really comes down to whether or not you are willing to put in the time and effort to achieve your goals.”
Seymour said a culture of empowerment and encouragement is vital for a team that demands so much of its members’ time, both in the fall season and the spring.
“It’s hard since we are in two semesters and our season is so long, so time is always changing and the system we’ve had for the first semester may not be the same as our second one,” Seymour said.
Humphreys said both he and his teammates are expected to turn in their grades at the end of every semester to be reviewed by the wrestling team coaching staff.
The NCAA’s minimum cumulative GPA requirements for eligibility to compete as a Division I athlete ranges from a 1.6 GPA as a freshman to a 1.9 GPA as a senior.
“Every time grades come out, the coaches always tell us to send them in the GroupMe, so everyone is required to show their GPA. You’re going to be trying a little harder to not get embarrassed with a 1.8,” Humphreys said.
Humphreys said having a “work, then play” attitude helps keep student-athletes’ days structured.
“Time management and being able to get stuff done that you have to get done and then chill out, not the other way around, is most important,” Humphreys said.