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NCAA Report: Student-Athletes Continue To Achieve Academically including Baseball

FROM NCAA PRESS RELEASE
A decade into academic reform, student-athletes in Division I continue to make gains academically.

The latest NCAA Academic Progress Rates show overall improvement, including upticks in baseball, football and men’s and women’s basketball.

The most recent four-year Division I APR is 976, a two-point improvement from last year. The average four-year rate also rose two points in baseball (967) and football (951), five points in men’s basketball (957) and one point in women’s basketball (973).

NCAA President Mark Emmert praised the academic progress of Division I student-athletes and noted that the APR is accomplishing the goals of its creators.

“Ten years ago, the membership designed the APR to encourage student-athletes to stay in school and earn good grades. We are pleased to see that more and more student-athletes are doing that every year,” Emmert said. “The significant academic standards adopted by our membership help us support success in the classroom to the same degree that we support success on the playing fields.”

In addition to positive movement in the overall and high-profile sport rates, the number of student-athletes leaving school ineligible continues to decline.  Over the last ten years, the number of student-athletes leaving that left school ineligible has decreased more than 40 percent.

The number of student-athletes returning to school to get their degrees since the creation of APR is nearly 13,000. The program allows schools to “earn back” a lost retention point for student-athletes who left school without earning their degree. Nearly half of those student-athletes (6,312) competed in the high-profile sports of baseball, men’s basketball, football and women’s basketball. Each of these graduates earned APR points for their team as well and rarely factor into graduation rates.

“We are very encouraged by the 13,000 student-athletes who returned to school and graduated after originally leaving without their degrees,” said Committee on Academic Performance chair Walter Harrison, president of the University of Hartford. “These student-athletes reached the goal of graduation, and I applaud them for their success.”

Football Team APR Calculation

Calculating the APR for a team doesn’t have to be complicated. Each student-athlete earns one point for getting good grades and one point for staying in school or graduating each semester. The total points earned are then divided by the total possible points and multiplied by 1,000 to get the final APR for that semester.

POINTS
EARNED
POINTS POSSIBLE
75 student-athletes get good grades and stay in school or graduate 75 X (2 of 2) = 150 150
3 student-athletes stay in school,
but ineligible
3 X (1 of 2) = 3 6
5 student-athletes get good grades, but leave school 5 X (1 of 2) = 5 10
2 student-athletes leave school
while ineligible
2 X (0 of 2) = 0 4
SEMESTER TOTAL 158 170

Overall APR: 929

Every Division I sports team calculates its APR each academic year. Scholarship student-athletes each semester receive one point for remaining eligible and one point for staying in school or graduating. Teams scoring below certain thresholds can face consequences, including practice restrictions and playing season reductions. Rates are an average of the past four years’ performance. National aggregates are based on all teams with usable data at the time of analysis.

In order to compete in the 2014-15 postseason, teams must achieve either a 930 multi-year APR or a 940 average over the most recent two years. This approach represents the next step in a phased-in move to a standard 930 benchmark, which will be in place for most schools with next year’s announcement of 2013-14 data collected in the fall of 2014. To assist limited-resource institutions, the Division I Board of Directors gave these schools and their teams more flexibility to meet the standards.

The NCAA continues to work closely with limited-resource schools and Historically Black Colleges and Universities as they continue to improve the academic performance of their student-athletes. The 2012-13 APR for teams at limited-resource schools is 962, up 15 points in the past three years. The bulk of the improvement at limited-resource schools comes from a 21-point increase in eligibility over that same time period. At HBCUs, the multi-year APR is 953, up 23 in the last three years. A 30-point increase in eligibility over those three years bolstered that rate as well.

“Our goal in creating the APR and in academic reform is to ensure that student-athletes are prepared for their future after college,” Harrison said. “Every time these numbers rise, it means something to me. It’s more than just a higher number.  It’s real people achieving their degrees, which helps them be more successful in life.”

The NCAA provides APR adjustments for student-athletes who transfer to another four-year school after earning a 2.6 grade-point average and those who leave in good academic standing for professional athletics careers. The most recent APRs are multi-year rates based on the rates from the 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13 academic years.

APRs for each team, lists of teams receiving public recognition and those receiving sanctions are available online through the NCAA’s searchable database.

Post-season ineligibility and penalties

In 2014-15, 36 teams will be ineligible for the postseason due to their low APR, compared with 13 teams last year. The increase is not unexpected, as this is the first year that teams are required to achieve a 930 APR – or average a 940 over the last two years – to be eligible to compete after the regular season.

In the next academic year, 57 Division I teams will take penalties – separate from the postseason requirement – for not meeting the minimum academic standard set by member schools. In 2013-14, only 32 teams took penalties. The increase is not unexpected because the benchmark for penalties is rising to 930 from 900.

To earn a penalty, a team must post an APR below 930 and not meet the waiver criteria established by CAP or decline to seek waivers of their penalty. The NCAA’s penalty structure has three levels, with penalties increasing in severity at each level. Schools move through the penalty structure each year, progressing to the next level if their multi-year APR remains below the benchmarks.

The specific penalties for each team are listed on the school’s report in the APR searchable database.

Level One penalties focus on practice restrictions, allowing teams to use that time to focus on academics. Teams facing this penalty lose four hours and one day of practice time per week in season, replaced with academic activities. This year, 42 teams face this level of penalty.

Level Two penalties include the Level One penalty and a reduction of four hours of practice time out of season replaced with academic activities. This level also includes the elimination of the nonchampionship season or spring football. Teams without nonchampionship seasons face a reduced number of contests. This year, 14 teams fall in this category.

Level Three penalties include all Level One and Two penalties, plus a menu of potential additional penalties. These can include financial aid reductions; additional practice and contest restrictions, coach-specific penalties (including game and recruiting restrictions); restricted access to practice for incoming students who fall below certain academic standards; restricted membership; and potential multi-year bans on postseason competition. In 2014-15, one faces this level of penalty.

Teams with postseason ineligibility in 2014-15 (Sorted by sport)

(Teams may also face APR penalties)

Baseball
Mississippi Valley State University

Football
Alabama State University
Florida A&M University
Mississippi Valley State University
Prairie View A&M University
St. Francis University (Pennsylvania)
Savannah State University
University of Arkansas, Pine Bluff
University of Idaho
University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Men’s basketball
Alabama State University
Appalachian State University
Florida A&M University
Houston Baptist University
Lamar University
San Jose State University
University of Central Arkansas
University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee

Men’s Cross Country
New Jersey Institute of Technology
Norfolk State University

Men’s Golf
Alabama A&M University

Men’s Soccer
Howard University

Men’s Tennis
Florida Atlantic University
Georgia State University

Men’s Indoor Track
Charleston Southern University
Delaware State University
East Tennessee State University
Louisiana Tech University
New Jersey Institute of Technology
Norfolk State University

Men’s Outdoor Track
Charleston Southern University
New Jersey Institute of Technology
Norfolk State University

Wrestling
Campbell University
University of Buffalo

Women’s Lacrosse
Howard University

* Waiver pending

All teams at Southern University are currently ineligible for post-season competition due to unusable data.

Teams facing Level One APR penalties

Alcorn State University:
Women’s volleyball

Appalachian State
Men’s basketball*

Binghamton University
Men’s basketball

California State University, Fullerton
Men’s basketball

Campbell University
Wrestling

Delaware State University
Men’s indoor track and field

East Tennessee State University
Men’s indoor track and field

Fairleigh Dickinson University
Men’s basketball

Florida A&M University
Football

Florida Atlantic University
Men’s tennis

Francis Marion University
Men’s golf

Houston Baptist University
Men’s basketball

Howard University
Men’s soccer, women’s lacrosse

Lamar University
Men’s basketball

Louisiana Tech University
Men’s indoor track and field

New Jersey Institute of Technology
Men’s cross country, men’s indoor track and field, men’s outdoor track and field

New Mexico State University
Football

Norfolk State University
Baseball, men’s cross country

Oklahoma State University
Football

San Jose State University
Men’s basketball

Savannah State University
Women’s basketball*

Southeastern Louisiana University
Men’s golf

St. Francis University
Football

Towson University
Women’s basketball

University of Arkansas, Pine Bluff
Football

University of Buffalo
Wrestling*

University of Central Arkansas
Men’s basketball

University of Idaho
Football

University of Louisiana, Monroe
Men’s indoor track and field

University of Maryland, Eastern Shore
Women’s softball, women’s volleyball

University of Montana
Men’s outdoor track and field

University of Nevada, Las Vegas
Football

University of North Carolina, Charlotte
Men’s basketball

University of Tennessee, Martin
Men’s basketball

University of Texas, Pan American
Men’s cross country

University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee
Men’s basketball

Washington State University
Women’s volleyball

Teams facing Level Two APR penalties

Alabama A&M
Men’s golf

Alabama State University
Football, men’s basketball

Charleston Southern University
Men’s indoor track and field*, men’s outdoor track and field*

Florida A&M University
Men’s basketball

Florida International University
Men’s basketball

Norfolk State University
Men’s indoor track and field, men’s outdoor track and field

Mississippi Valley State University
Baseball, football

Prairie View A&M University
Football

Savannah State University
Football

University of New Orleans
Women’s basketball

Teams facing Level Three APR penalties

University of New Orleans
Men’s basketball