Kent State Captures MAC FAR Award in Women’s Sports

Kent State University has won the Mid-American Conference’s Faculty Athletics Representative (FAR) for women’s sports award for the first time in school history.

The award is given annually and designed to recognize the conference institution with the highest overall combination of both grade point average (GPA) and Academic Progress Rate rank by gender while in a competitive setting. For the 2019-2020 campaign, only the fall grades were taken into consideration for the award. 

“I am incredibly proud of this historic achievement,” Kent State Director of Athletics Joel Nielsen said. “The work and dedication by our women’s student-athletes to earn this prestigious award is unmatched. This is not only a testament to that dedication, but displays the unwavering support from coaches, our academic support personnel, faculty and staff.”

All nine of Kent State’s women’s programs (the MAC did not sponsor lacrosse in 2019-2020) posted GPAs above a 3.3 with six of the nine teams posting a 3.5 or higher. Leading the way was gymnastics, who posted their second-highest mark in program history with a 3.70 team GPA in the fall term. 

“We are extremely proud of all of our student-athletes for the way they handled themselves academically,” gymnastics head coach Brice Biggin said. “They worked extremely hard and had tremendous support and help from our academic support staff! The team worked really hard together to perform their best academically.”

Field hockey led the fall teams with three Distinguished Scholar-Athletes (Luisa Knapp, Laila Richter and Clara Rodriguez-Seto), an award that recognizes a student-athlete who posted a GPA of 3.5 or higher and was named All-Conference. Soccer (Vital Kats) and volleyball (Alex Haffner) were also recognized by the conference.

“I am very proud of all of our female student-athletes and their incredible work in the classroom this past school year,” field hockey head coach Kyle DeSandes-Moyer said. “Academic excellence is such an important part of Kent State Athletics, and we are so grateful for all of our resources and the support of our academic support staff that had a critical role in this historic achievement!”

The Kent State Golden Flashes also excelled in the Academic Progress Report (APR) released last month. Kent State had single-year perfect score APR rankings of 1,000 in women’s basketball, women’s cross country, women’s golf, gymnastics, softball, women’s soccer, women’s track and field, and volleyball. In addition, women’s golf, gymnastics and softball have all averaged a perfect score APR ranking of 1,000 over the previous four seasons.

For more information about Kent State Athletics, visit

POSTED: Tuesday, June 9, 2020 - 1:33pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, June 9, 2020 - 3:17pm
Kent State Athletics