Area schools fare mostly well in APR report

The NCAA released it annual Academic Progress Rate report Wednesday, and Georgia, Georgia Tech and Kennesaw State saw most of its teams come through with no penalties, the exception being Georgia State’s men tennis team.

The APR is a four-year average that provides a real-time look at a team’s academic success each semester. Students who receive financial aid earn one point for staying in school and another point for being academically eligible. Each team’s points are divided by the points possible and multiplied by 1,000.

A perfect score is 1,000.

The index, now in its ninth year, is designed to serve as a predictor of graduation success. The most recent APR scores are multiyear rates based on the scores from the 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12, and 2012-13 academic years.

NCAA sports that fall below the established point cutoff of 930, or a two-year average of 940, are subject to penalties, including scholarship reductions.

Georgia: All 20 of the Bulldogs' sports met the NCAA's minimum standards for eligibility, retention and graduation, with three of the teams posting perfect scores.

“It takes the commitment of coaches, academic counseling and student services staff, and the student-athletes themselves to be successful,” athletic director Greg McGarity said. “This is a good example of how that teamwork can bring positive results.”

UGA’s teams in men’s golf, women’s gymnastics and women’s swimming and diving teams had perfect scores. The other scores were men’s basketball (986), men’s indoor track (976), men’s outdoor track (973), men’s cross country (985), women’s cross country (996), men’s swimming and diving (978), women’s golf (994), women’s indoor track and field (987), women’s outdoor track and field (987), women’s basketball (977) and football (967).

Georgia State: Five teams posted APRs above 980, with one team receiving a penalty of what is expected to be a one-year postseason ban for not reaching the 930 or the 940.

Men’s golf, which achieved a perfect score, was joined by softball (995), court volleyball (984), cross country (982) and women’s soccer (980) as teams that ranked among the top-10 percent among Division I teams. Men’s basketball scored 950, tied for second-highest in the Sun Belt Conference, and football scored a two-year average of 940.

Men’s tennis scored a 906, a drop of 17 points from last year’s score. GSU attributed the low score to students who elected to transfer from the university. An athletic department spokesman said next year’s average is expected to rise with the elimination of the 2009-10 score, coupled with a higher score for 2013-14.

Georgia Tech: The scores for 14 of the 17 teams either stayed the same or improved. The golf, men's swimming and women's tennis teams had perfect scores.

Eight of the teams — men’s basketball, golf, softball, men’s swimming, women’s tennis, volleyball, men’s cross country and women’s cross country — had perfect scores for the 2012-13 year, the most recent of four academic years that were included in this year’s APR scores.

The men’s basketball team’s improvement is dramatic. Three years ago, the team’s score was 915, last in the ACC and so low that the NCAA penalized the team with a scholarship reduction. Tech’s 989 is tied for fifth best in the ACC.

The football team stayed at 983, which for the second year was high enough to be in the top 10 percent in FBS. The Yellow Jackets were, in fact, tied for seventh in FBS with Clemson.

In a statement, athletic director Mike Bobinski hailed the results and added that the school’s athletes collectively earned a 3.0 in the spring semester.

“We are very proud of the commitment and effort of our student-athletes in both the classroom and athletic competition and we look forward to continued success in the years ahead,” he said.

Kennesaw State: Led by men's and women's golf's perfect scores, all 17 teams met the NCAA's requirements. Men's indoor track (981) and women's cross country (984) also scored among the top 10 percent of teams in Division I.

Men’s basketball scored 945 and baseball scored 932, lowest in the Atlantic Sun Conference.