Few big names to lose scholarships based on APR
Few big-name schools will lose scholarships as a result of the Academic Progress Rates report released Wednesday.
The NCAA said that 99 Division I sports teams at 65 colleges and universities -- or less than 2 percent of 6,112 Division I sports teams nationwide -- will lose scholarships for poor scholastic performance by their student-athletes.
|Schools which will lose scholarships for poor scholastic performance under the terms of the Academic Progress Rates reform program:|
|New Mexico St.||2|
|S. Carolina St.||2|
In Division I-A football, Temple (9), New Mexico State (6), Toledo (6) Hawaii (5), Middle Tennessee (5), Western Michigan (5) Buffalo (3) and Northern Illinois (2) were penalized.
"You've got to bring in kids that not only want to make it to the NFL, but also want to graduate and get their degree," first-year Middle Tennessee coach Rick Stockstill told ESPN. "If a kid just wants to graduate and not make it to the NFL, I'm not interested. If he wants the NFL and not the degree, I'm not interested. You have to do a good job in evaluating. We're getting out of the Prop 48 business."
In Division I basketball, Cal-Poly (2), Centenary (2), East Carolina (2), Hampton (2), Jacksonville (2), Kent State (2), Maryland Eastern Shore (2), New Mexico State (2), South Carolina State (2), Texas State (2), Sacramento State (1), DePaul (1), Florida A&M (1), Lousiana Lafayette (1), Louisiana-Monroe (1), Louisiana Tech (1) and Prarie View (1) were penalized.
First-year New Mexico State coach Reggie Theus told ESPN.com that it wasn't fair that a new coach gets penalized for past transgressions. The Aggies will lose two scholarships, a decision Theus said NMSU appealed to no avail. He will have to take off the scholarships from his maximum 13 for next season.
"There's got to be some sort of grace period to see if there is improvement [for new coaches] before you get hit with a penalty," Theus said Wednesday. "We've got a new AD, a new president, new programs that we've implemented and you would think we could get at least one of those penalties rescinded. But we didn't.
"We'll survive it," Theus said. "But for new coaches it puts you behind the eight ball."
First-year Temple coach Al Golden said he hadn't considered whether it was fair or not.
"I've been dealing with the problem," Golden told ESPN. "I try to demolish the bridges behind me by moving forward and not looking back. I wasn't here, so my regime didn't affect the scores. But now, we have a chance to positively affect those scores."
Golden said his players have been in an academic "culture shock" since his arrival seven weeks ago. "Every player will attend every class," Golden said. "They will keep every tutorial and study hall appointment. They are required to sit in the front row of their classes and get to know their professors."
Coaches are involved, as well.
"We personally make sure they hand their papers in," Golden said. "Every day, our coaches have 2½ hours on their schedule to spend with the players. Our coaches are required to personally meet with the academic counselors and have copies of their players' class schedules and syllabuses. And yes, we have been personally checking classes. We're already getting the right results."
Only seven teams in the six power conferences -- Atlantic Coast, Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, Southeastern and Pac-10 -- were sanctioned. Four schools -- Oklahoma State, Texas Tech and Texas of the Big 12, and Tennessee of the SEC -- had insufficient scores in baseball. West Virginia of the Big East was penalized in men's wrestling and Mississippi of the SEC was sanctioned in men's indoor track.
DePaul of the Big East was the only power conference school to be penalized in football or men's basketball. It could lose one scholarship in men's basketball.
"The rates earned by many of our sports are at, or near, a perfect score and reflect the continued academic success of DePaul student-athletes," said DePaul AD Jean Lenti Ponsetto. "Thirteen of our 15 teams exceeded the average across every class of Division I as well as private institutions as a whole. Our men's basketball APR is reflective of the student-athletes who did not persist, in large part, as a result of coaching changes in the program. Our highest priority remains the academic success of our student-athletes."
The NCAA also released a list of schools that consistently outperformed the academic standards. Among those were Brown, Harvard, Yale, Notre Dame, the three U.S. military academies and William and Mary.
One of the programs hit hardest was Florida A&M, which loses scholarships in baseball (1.07), football (8), men's basketball (1), men's swimming (0.99) and women's swimming (1.23).
The NCAA said that the loss of eight football scholarships will be separate and in addition to penalties previously leveled against Florida A&M. Charged with a lack of institutional control, Florida A&M was put on probation for four years with a loss of 30 scholarships, including 14 over the next four seasons.
|Schools (Division I-A) which will lose scholarships for poor scholastic performance under the terms of the Academic Progress Rates reform program:|
|Middle Tenn. St.||5|
|New Mexico St.||2|
Of the 99 sports teams that will lose scholarships, 90 are men's teams and 9 are women's teams. The majority are in three sports: football (23), baseball (21), and men's basketball (17).
Sacramento State in California had the most teams affected (six) and could face the loss of as many five athletes. The school could lose as many as 2.3 scholarships.
Prairie View A&M, in Texas, was among the hardest sanctioned schools. It could lose nearly 10 athletes in five sports and be penalized 5.3 scholarships in football and nearly eight altogether.
As many as 350 Division I sports teams were in danger of penalties at this time last year. "We are encouraged by the response on many campuses to academic reform," said NCAA president Myles Brand. "The goal of academic reform is to improve academic behaviors and increase graduation, not unnecessarily penalize teams."
More serious consequences, which could include limits on postseason competition and restricted membership status, await teams that continue to academically under perform.
Eight institutions have not yet completed the process for determining penalties under APR: Arizona State University; Northern Arizona University; San Diego State University; San Jose State University; Texas A&M University, College Station; University of Arizona; University of Kansas; and Tulane University.
For a team to lose a scholarship under the "contemporaneous penalty" portion of academic reform, a student-athlete must have failed academically and left the institution; and the team's APR must be below 925 (out of 1000).
The APR is calculated by measuring the academic eligibility and retention of student-athletes by team each term. Based on current data, an APR of 925 calculates to an approximate Graduation Success Rate of 60 percent.
Teams that fall below the NCAA's cutoff line would not be able to replace those scholarships when academically ineligible athletes leave school. The NCAA has limited penalties to a maximum of 10 percent of the scholarships.
There is some concern that historically black colleges and universities were affected disproportionately.
"It is an issue," Brand said. "A number of those institutions received mission exemptions, but there are a number of institutions that are still not performing as well for student-athletes as they are for the rest of the student body."
Kevin Lennon, the NCAA's vice president for membership services, said 63 teams received waivers, primarily based on mission statements. Sixteen waivers were rejected.
Brand said baseball has been hit harder because more players leave school early for professional leagues and transfer rules do permit baseball players to sit out one season before continuing their college career.
Harsher penalties will be handed out in the future.
Next year, the NCAA will begin sending warning letters to schools whose teams have historically fared poorly in academics. In 2007-08, those schools could face the loss of scholarships and in 2008-09, the penalties could include a ban from postseason tournaments.
Information from ESPN's Joe Schad and Andy Katz and The Associated Press was used in this report.
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