The APR and raised eyebrows

I questioned the “little guys are getting it stuck to them again” criticism of the APR at the time the last report came out, but felt that there were some valid issues raised about implementation of the policy.

… That’s not to say that there aren’t abuses of the system. Hall is right when he criticizes the ease with which waivers are granted to certain programs. To an extent, Tomey’s argument that his program got screwed for honoring the lax academic standards of his predecessor isn’t without some merit. But it’s hard to say that’s a valid defense. It’s just that other schools shouldn’t be allowed to get away with what is most likely similar past bad behavior.

Now comes USA Today with some further evidence that sanctions aren’t being evenly distributed between the BCS conferences and the mid-majors.  For example,

… The Pac-10, for example, saw only three of 14 subpar teams sanctioned (21%) while the neighboring Western Athletic saw 23 of 34 (68%) and the Mountain West 10 of 15 (67%).

The SEC saw only five of 20 low-APR teams sanctioned (25%). The Sun Belt, with roughly the same geographic footprint, saw 16 of 46 (35%).

Now stats are fine in the abstract, but it would be useful to know more about the specifics.  As the article notes,

… The bigger-budget schools are more capable of beefing up academic support programs and taking other supportive measures such as covering summer school costs for incoming athletes and reducing missed class time by flying rather than busing to games.

And that may very well be the case in many circumstances.  Remember that Dick Tomey admitted his school didn’t even have an academic support program in place until three years ago.  But you wonder if there’s something else going on here.  Unfortunately, the article doesn’t give us any indication if that’s the case.  It would certainly make for an interesting follow up.

In the meantime, scratch your head over a factoid like this…

Both opponents in last season’s Motor City Bowl, Purdue and Central Michigan, posted football APRs beneath the NCAA’s 925 cutoff. Purdue had a 920 but wasn’t penalized. Central had a 922 and lost two scholarships…

and wonder if the players are benefiting from the new academic order.  Which, after all, is the whole point to the exercise.


UPDATE: As usual, Sunday Morning Quarterback adds some cogent thoughts on this topic here.



Filed under Academics? Academics.

2 responses to “The APR and raised eyebrows

  1. 69Dawg

    NCAA plays favorites, that’s not even news, just ask SMU. The only reason they got the death penalty was that they were a private school. NCAA would never, ever do that to a State school. State schools have Senators and Congressman who can introduce nice laws to kill the NCAA so the Death Penalty is a joke. One of these smaller schools needs to sue the NCAA for discrimination, just to jerk their chain.


  2. Thomas Brown

    The Kansas Jayhawks of the Big XII and Washington State Cougars of the Pac-10 were both penalized with Lost Football Scholarships for being beneath the threshold established by the NCAA on teams who have enough student-athletes on those teams to be subject to the penalties.

    Teams who have fewer student-athletes, in sports which just don’t have the numbers of a football team with 85 scholarships, are not subject to penalties of lost scholarships, never have been, and were announced prior to the NCAA Academic Progress Rate (APR) as not being subject to loss of scholarships penalties.

    Why leave out that Pac-10 Washington State Cougars, who have not had a winning record in Football in 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007 are subject to Lost Scholarships for 2008 because they tried to accept student-athletes who could not accomplish the workload ?

    Why, when again your URL Links take you to discussions too that the Kansas Jayhawks Lost Scholarships in Football 2008, do you not also discuss that the Kansas Jayhawks in football did not have a winning record in Football in 2003, 2004, (2005 they were 7-5) and 2006, yet last season they played 1 of the softest SoS in the nation and were almost going to be named BCS Mythical National Championship participants until they Lost to Missouri in their last regular season game ?

    Clearly, these 2 programs in a win at all costs maneuver, now have to pay the Penalty in Football for the errors of their ways to attempt to have a competitive football program, instead of what they in fact have had recently instead.

    These mid-major programs in the Bowl Championship Division who clearly for all to follow have taken the players that cannot get into let’s say The University of Georgia, have done this even more blatantly than Pac-10 Washington State and Big XII patsy playing Kansas Jayhawks.

    Boo-hoo. They are having to pay the Penalties. The APR is supposed to be applied to sports where there is a statistically relevant number of student-athletes in an attempt to clean up these sports.

    I find it without precedent when Washington State and Kansas are clearly identified at your URL Links as 2 BCS Football Programs who have Lost Scholarships in Football in 2008 now, that you fail to point that out at all.

    That the NCAA APR was announced as having Teeth to punish football programs such as Kansas and Washington State, and now have done exactly that, should come as no surprise to anyone who follows this sport of College Football. This is not a surprise to me that the mid-majors have little choice but take the leftovers, the misfits, the ones who potentially could have gotten them into the mess they now find themselves relative to the 6 BCS Conferences except for the Pac-10 Washington State Cougars and Big XII Kansas Jayhawks.

    The student-athletes is what we are supposed to be talking about sir. If he stays at the school and remains eligible, he scores well on the APR at 2 for 2. If he fails either of the 2, he is 0 for that 1 or 0 for both, 0 for 2.

    We know exactly who this APR is aimed at.

    If the BCS Schools except Pac-10 Washington State and Big XII Kansas took this seriously 4 years ago when the APR was announced by the NCAA, and the mid-majors have no choice but take the dredge of the world to play Football at their institutions, then it will show up in the APR. Duh.

    UGA has gone way out of its way to have in fact a stellar APR in Football, including better than the Georgia Institute of Technology in Football, for example.

    There are 239 Division 1 Football Teams. Pac-10 Washington State has an APR in Football of 916 announced on May 2, 2008. They Lose Scholarships this year because their average APR for 4 Consecutive Years is deplorable and clearly a sign that Washington State Cougars have way too many football players on Scholarship who are not remaining at Washington State and are not eligible to play Football. The same is true for the Kansas Jayhawks pansy playing schedules of the Big XII.

    Win at all costs.

    Pay for it.

    The University of Kansas Jayhawks Football team for 4 years now has a 4-year Average APR of 919.

    UGA Football has an APR of 965.

    Why not just provide the in fact URL Link to the May 2, 2008 Academic Progress Rate, as I have now done here ?

    Georgia Tech Football APR is 951. Anyone who follows this sport knows that Georgia Tech has been in all kinds of drug issues, loss of scholarships for 2007-2008 for NCAA Major Infractions Database for Academic Cheating Probation and taking all kinds of student-athletes who cannot do the course work at Georgia Tech but were given the scholarship there anyway.

    That Georgia Tech would be in fact 951 to UGA at 965, is likewise surprising to no one who follows this sport of college football.

    You are not going to be allowed to keep these players on your football team, so why bring them in when UGA, for example, turns them down ?