Georgia Tech's Ramblin' Wreck leads the band, cheerleaders, Buzz, players, and coaches before the start of the Georgia Tech home opener against the Alcorn State on Saturday, September 1, 2018. HYOSUB SHIN / HSHIN@AJC.COM

Georgia Tech athletics’ singular achievement in the classroom

By one standard, Georgia Tech athletes’ performance in the classroom stands alone among their power conference peers.

According to the Academic Progress Rate scores released Wednesday by the NCAA, Tech was the only athletic department among all power conference schools whose score for each team was above the national average for its respective sport.

Leading the way were the golf and men’s tennis teams, which were both recognized last week by the NCAA for having APR scores in the top 10 percent of their sports, both with perfect 1,000 scores.

APR measures eligibility, graduation and retention on a semester-by-semester basis. The scores are averaged over a rolling four-year period. The scores released Wednesday measured the 2014-15 through 2017-18 academic years.

In a statement, athletic director Todd Stansbury called it a point of pride for the athletic department and school.

“I congratulate and thank our student-athletes and coaches for their continued dedication to academics, and also thank our academic support staff, as well as the institute’s administration and professors, for all that they do to help develop our student-athletes – the young people who will change the world,” Stansbury said.

Tech’s APR performance wasn’t quite as laudatory by another measure. Its two teams finishing in the top 10 percent of their sports tied with N.C. State for the fewest in the ACC. Notre Dame led with 14.

Of Tech’s 15 sports (counting outdoor and indoor track and field as one sport), eight teams improved or maintained their perfect 1,000 scores. The football team stayed at 980 and the men’s basketball team improved 10 points to 971. The biggest gainer was the women’s basketball team, up 14 points to 995. The volleyball team and women’s track and field team had the largest drop, five points, to 995 and 993, respectively. The women’s swimming and diving team was third highest after golf and men’s tennis at 998.

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