SPARTANBURG, S.C. - The Southern Conference ranked among the nation's elite in Academic Progress Report (APR) scores released by the National Collegiate Athletics Association Tuesday afternoon. The league posted an overall score of 978 which tied for the ninth-highest APR among 31 Division I conferences and is a one-point increase from last year's score.
The NCAA's APR scores released Tuesday are multi-year rates based on scores from the 2006-07, 2007-08, 2008-09 and 2009-10 academic years. The APR report is part of the NCAA's overall Division I academic reform effort.
"We're proud of earning a place in the upper level of Division I for overall APR," said Southern Conference Commissioner John Iamarino. "Our three highest-profile sports - football, men's and women's basketball - all rank in the top 10 nationally. Clearly our programs are operating at a quality success rate."
Seven Southern Conference sports (men's basketball, women's basketball, football, women's cross country, women's indoor track & field, women's outdoor track and field, and men's golf) rank in the top 10 in Division I based upon their four-year average.
Southern Conference men's basketball has a four-year average of 959 which ranks sixth nationally. Football has a four-year average of 954 which ranks seventh nationally and fourth in the Football Championships Subdivision. Women's basketball has the highest national rank in the conference (third) with a score of 986.
Women's cross country posted the best APR in the conference with a score of 990. Tennis earned the highest score on the men's side with a mark of 973.
ABOUT THE APR
- The Academic Progress Rate is a real-time measure of eligibility, retention and graduation of student-athletes competing on every Division I sports team, which has been shown to predict later graduation success.
- The most recent APR scores are based on a multi-year rate that averages scores from the 2006-07, 2007-08,
2008-09 and 2009-10 academic years.
- The Division I Board of Directors set cut scores of 925 and 900 (out of 1,000) as a threshold for teams to meet or face possible immediate and historical sanctions. An APR of 925 currently predicts an approximately 50 percent Graduation Success Rate (GSR) and an APR of 900 currently predicts an approximately 40 percent GSR.
- The goal of academic reform is improvement, not punishment. Not only does academic reform ensure accountability for student-athletes, teams and institutions, but also it provides fairness by considering individual circumstances per team and school.