Coug Football: Highest single-year APR ever

ALL 17 OF Washington State's intercollegiate athletic programs are in compliance with the Academic Progress Report guidelines, as the NCAA released the 2011-12 APR figures this week. And the WSU football team posted its highest single-year score ever.

The Cougs' single-year 2011-12 score of 960 marked the highest one-year total ever in football. WSU previously posted a 955 single-year score in 2004-05.

Washington State recorded a four-year average score of 942 in football, an improvement from last year's score of 933. The NCAA's standard is 930 (although waiver requests are in some cases granted.)

The WSU basketball program recorded a 957 in the four-year average. The 2011-12 score was 962.

Elsewhere on the men's side, baseball posted an average score of 969, followed by outdoor track and field (967) and indoor track and field (965), and cross country (944).

The highest multi-year APR score at WSU was earned by the men's golf team, which recorded a score of 985, edging out women's cross country's four-year score of 984.

Programs that reached an average score of 970 or better included women's soccer (979), women's basketball (977), tennis (976), rowing (974), women's outdoor track and field (973) and women's indoor track and field (970).

Additional women's multi-year scores include swimming (968), golf (959) and volleyball (918). The volleyball team secured a single-year mark of 939 in 2011-12. That was also the biggest single-year improvement from the previous year, up from 837 the previous year.

WSU programs recording perfect single-year scores (2011-12) of 1000 include women's basketball, tennis and women's cross country.

The APR is an annual assessment of not just each team's academic history -- but also of their retention history. The APR awards two points each term to student-athletes on athletic scholarship who meet academic-eligibility standards and who remain with the institution. CF.C has been critical in the past of the NCAA APR program because in our view it is not an accurate academic metric -- it can and has decreased the scores and penalized institutions when student-athletes in good academic standing transfer or depart.

A team's APR is the total points earned by the team at a given time divided by the total points possible. The overall APR score is based on the most recent four years of data (2008-09, 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12). Every year thereafter, the most current year's data will be added and the oldest year of data will be removed, creating a four-year rolling rate.

"Our student-athletes, coaches and staff place a high priority on academic success and this most recent release by the NCAA confirms we are on the right track," said WSU Director of Athletics Bill Moos. "Reaching for excellence academically, athletically and socially are traits many of our student-athletes exhibit and I am proud of how they represent this outstanding university."

  • The benchmark for postseason participation is rising in 2014-15 from 900 to 930. That will put a number of major programs in jeopardy if they do not improve their scores in the next few years. Among them are the football programs at Tennessee (924), Louisville (924) and Oklahoma State (926) and the men's basketball programs at Providence (915), Texas A&M (911), Houston (908) and Oregon (918).

  • Poor Academic Progress Rate scores mean postseason bans in the 2013-14 academic year for teams from 10 schools in one or more sports: Florida A&M, Florida International, Alabama State, Arkansas-Pine Bluff, Grambling State, Mississippi Valley State, New Orleans, Norfolk State, Savannah State and Southern.

  • Of the 51 squads who were below 900 in the APR, the NCAA says only 18 of them will be ineligible for postseason competition this year because of NCAA waivers and what the NCAA called other mitigating factors.

  • UConn was ineligible for the NCAA tournament last year and although the school is still below 900 in the four-year average, the NCAA has deemed them eligible for the 2013-14 tournament because its two-year average has shown improvement and is now above 930.

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