Sports News

Maxwell Takes Reigns As Equestrian Head Coach

Casie Maxwell was named head coach of the Baylor Equestrian program this summer, following the retirement of longtime head coach Ellen White. Maxwell, a two-time Big 12 Coach of the Year at Kansas State, becomes Equestrian’s second head coach since the program’s founding in 2004.

“Casie is a tremendous coaching talent, held in high regard by coaches and student-athletes across the country,” Baylor University Vice President and Director of Athletics Mack Rhoades said. “She has shown a commitment to our values in Preparing Champions for Life, and she has lived that out over the last decade of coaching the sport at a high level. We believe that she is the perfect fit to take the Baylor equestrian program to the next level.”

Maxwell joins the Bears after spending the previous decade at Kansas State, serving as the head coach from July 2009 until June 2016, when the program was discontinued by the athletic department. Temporarily transitioning from coaching, Maxwell stayed at K-State as a compliance specialist for the last year. As coach, she led the western team to three reserve titles, coached 17 All-Americans, two national riders of the year and was named Big 12 Coach of the Year in 2015 and 2016.

“I am honored and so excited to continue my coaching career at Baylor University,” Maxwell said. “Coaching has a special place in my heart and I am so grateful for the opportunity to contribute to a shared mission of turning these great student-athletes into strong, successful women, all within Baylor’s faith-based caring community. I cannot wait to get back into the arena and get started coaching the talented student-athletes who have chosen Baylor for their collegiate careers.”

Maxwell succeeds Ellen White, BA ’81, the inaugural head coach who grew Baylor Equestrian into one of the nation’s premier programs. She won a national championship, three Big 12 titles and amassed a 126-78 record, including nine-straight 10-win seasons and a winning record in 11 of her 12 seasons at the helm of the program.

In 2012, White coached Baylor Equestrian to its first national title by claiming the 2012 NCEA Hunter Seat National Championship. Last year, she capped off her career with the third Big 12 title in program history.

“We are grateful to Ellen White for her 12 years of service to her alma mater,” Rhoades said. “As an early pioneer of the sport, she quickly established the nationally respected Baylor Equestrian program upon her arrival in 2004 and has built a strong foundation for the future.”

Baylor Finishes In Top 25 In Learfield Directors’ Cup; Second-Best In Program History

A successful 2016-17 season for Baylor Athletics earned the Bears a spot among the nation’s elite programs once again in the Learfield Sports NACDA Directors’ Cup.

By securing three Big 12 Conference titles and seeing 18 of 19 athletics programs advance to postseason competition, Baylor University secured its second-highest finish with a No. 24 result in the 2016-17 Learfield Directors’ Cup standings, announced by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA).

The Directors’ Cup is a program that honors institutions achieving success in many men’s and women’s sports. Each Division I institution is eligible to earn points for 10 men’s and 10 women’s sports programs. No institution with fewer countable sports programs finished ahead of Baylor in this year’s Directors’ Cup.

Baylor’s 17 countable sports combined to record its highest point total in cup history of 790.25, earning 168.00 points in the fall, 225.75 in the winter and 396.50 in the spring. The Bears improved greatly upon last year’s No. 56 result with 425.00 points. The Cup’s points format does not account for three-time NCATA national champion acrobatics and tumbling and Big 12 Champion equestrian teams in its equation.

“I am continuously impressed by the tremendous leadership of our coaches and staff members and the dedication of our student-athletes,” Baylor Vice President and Director of Athletics Mack Rhoades said. “Having our institution well-represented in the postseason, earning three Big 12 Championships and posting a record 790.25 points in the Learfield Sports NACDA Directors’ Cup are testaments to that.”

In 2016-17, Baylor earned Big 12 titles in women’s basketball, women’s indoor track and field and equestrian, and the Acrobatics & Tumbling team earned its third straight national title.

Student-Athletes Produce Successful Academic Spring

Baylor student-athletes achieved a 3.26 cumulative grade point average (GPA) in the 2017 spring semester, and more than 100 of them were named to the University’s spring Deans’ List.

It marked the 18th consecutive semester in which Baylor student-athletes recorded a cumulative GPA of at least 3.00. Additionally, 315 student-athletes earned Big 12 Conference Commissioner’s Honor Roll distinction.

“The accomplishments of our student-athletes this spring are examples of the commitment we have made to Preparing Champions for Life,” Baylor Vice President and Director of Athletics Mack Rhoades said. “Our consistency in having a 3.00 GPA in 18 consecutive semesters speaks to the leadership of the coaches and staff we have at Baylor and the continued hard work of our student-athletes in the classroom.”

Baylor student-athletes earned more than 600 Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll recognitions for the sixth consecutive academic year after 305 student-athletes were so honored during the 2016 fall semester. Of 2016-17 honorees, 76 registered 4.0 GPAs in at least one of the two terms. At least 200 Baylor student-athletes have earned Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll recognition in each of the last 20 semesters with at least 300 honored in 13 of the last 14 terms.

The Big 12 Commissioner’s Honor Roll is an inclusive honor for varsity sports sponsored by the league membership. Student-athletes must possess a minimum 3.00 semester GPA to receive the conference’s recognition.

Baylor student-athletes were also well represented on Baylor’s 2017 spring Deans’ List with 107 honorees. To receive recognition from Baylor, students must possess a minimum 3.70 GPA after completing at least 12 semester hours and receive no grade lower than a C.