Tournament teams improve APR scores
North Carolina, Pittsburgh, Louisville and Connecticut share a No. 1 seeding in the NCAA tournament. Their graduation rates have less in common.
The numbers ranged from 86 percent at North Carolina to 33 percent at UConn, according to a report released Monday by The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport at the University of Central Florida.
Louisville was at 42 percent and Pitt at 69 percent.
The study also found that fewer tournament teams have failing Academic Progress Rates than last year. Twenty-one of the 65 tournament teams have APR scores under 925, the cutoff below which the NCAA can penalize schools. Last year, 35 teams had APR scores below 925.
Graduation rates remained similar to last year. Forty of the teams had graduation rates of at least 50 percent.
The graduation rates were based on whether freshmen who entered school between the 1998-99 and 2001-02 school years earned diplomas within six years.
Seven teams had a 100 percent graduation rate: Binghamton, Florida State, Marquette, Robert Morris, Utah State, Wake Forest and Western Kentucky.
The five lowest rates were at Cal State Northridge (8 percent), Maryland (10 percent), Portland State (17 percent), Arizona (20 percent) and Clemson (29 percent).
The study noted the ongoing gaps between the graduation rates of white and African-American players. Twenty-five tournament teams had a gap of 20 percentage points or more between the two groups.
Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press