Paul Goldschmidt gets his bachelor’s degree online while putting together an MVP-caliber season

We've heard about numerous athletes who complete their college degrees once they've gone pro. Using, for example, the offseason to finish up classes.

But Paul Goldschmidt, the Arizona Diamondbacks first baseman and to some, America's First Baseman, did something a bit different to finish up his schooling. He squeezed in his studies online this season while mashing home runs and becoming one of the top MVP candidates in the National League.

The D-backs announced on Tuesday that Goldschmidt, 25, has officially earned his degree — a bachelor’s of science in management from the University of Phoenix. Because where else is an Arizona Diamondbacks player going to get his learn on while criss-crossing the country. He joins Shaquille O'Neal, who earned his MBA through University of Phoenix, as a famous alum.

Important question: Does finishing online homework while hitting .295 with 31 homers and a league-leading 104 RBIs get a dude extra credit on his WAR? That might be the boost Goldschmidt needs to sway MVP voters.

“This was always something I wanted to get done,” Goldschmidt said in a press release issued by the team. “There may be other online universities, but University of Phoenix is the way to go, especially for a ballplayer during the baseball season. It’s tough to do it any other way.”

Sounds like he minored in being a pitchman, eh? (btw, the D-backs and the University of Phoenix do have an official partnership).

Goldschmidt finished three years at Texas State University before being drafted by the D-backs and has said in the past he wanted to finish his degree and put it to use. He's been taking classes during the past two seasons to get his diploma.

Joke as we might, hats off to Goldschmidt for being determined enough to see through his goal. Remember his story when someone you know says they don't have time to go back to school. If a guy like Goldschmidt can balance online school with a breakout season, contending for the playoffs, plus the traveling and conditioning needed to be a pro athlete, maybe it'll inspire one of his fans to crack open the books again too.

Baseball season's in full swing. Don't miss a thing.
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