Bulldogs Show High Marks Again For 10th Annual NCAA APR

          INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The numbers are in and once again Gonzaga University's sports teams fare well above their peers as the NCAA released its 10th annual Academic Progress Rates (APR) Wednesday.

            Last week an all-time high 11 Bulldog teams received Public Recognition Awards for ranking in the top 10 percent of their respective sport. Women’s golf, men’s soccer, men’s cross country, men’s indoor track, men’s outdoor track, women’s cross country, women’s indoor track, women’s outdoor track, men’s tennis, women’s tennis and women’s volleyball were the other Gonzaga sports recognized.

            Gonzaga men’s cross country, men’s tennis, men’s indoor track, men’s outdoor track, women's cross country, women’s golf, women’s tennis, women’s indoor track, women’s outdoor track and women’s volleyball each recorded a perfect 1,000, and 17 of Gonzaga’s sports included in the report (men's rowing is not a NCAA championship sport) were above the NCAA average of 976. Gonzaga's multi-year average was 996.

            The APR is based on data submitted by each institution for the 4-year period of 2009-10 thru 2012-13.

            "We continue to hit it out of the park when it comes to APR,” Gonzaga athletic director Mike Roth said. "To have 11 teams earn Public Recognition Awards last week and for all of our teams to show great results in the classroom this week is an accomplishment we should all be proud of. It's a reflection of a total team effort amongst our student-athletes, coaches and support staff to excel in the classroom as well as within the realm of athletic competition. While winning is definitely one of our objectives, we also want our student-athletes to set the academic bar high. We have done both.”

            The most recent 4-year Division I APR of 976 is a two-point improvement from last year. The average 4-year rate also rose two points in baseball (967) and football (951), five points in men’s basketball (957) and one point in women’s basketball (973).

            NCAA President Mark Emmert praised the academic progress of Division I student-athletes and noted that the APR is accomplishing the goals of its creators.

            “Ten years ago, the membership designed the APR to encourage student-athletes to stay in school and earn good grades. We are pleased to see that more and more student-athletes are doing that every year,” Emmert said. “The significant academic standards adopted by our membership help us support success in the classroom to the same degree that we support success on the playing fields.”

            In addition to positive movement in the overall and high-profile sport rates, the number of student-athletes leaving school ineligible continues to decline.  Over the last 10 years, the number of student-athletes leaving that left school ineligible has decreased more than 40 percent.

            The number of student-athletes returning to school to get their degrees since the creation of APR is nearly 13,000. The program allows schools to “earn back” a lost retention point for student-athletes who left school without earning their degree. Nearly half of those student-athletes (6,312) competed in the high-profile sports of baseball, men’s basketball, football and women’s basketball. Each of these graduates earned APR points for their team as well and rarely factor into graduation rates.

            “We are very encouraged by the 13,000 student-athletes who returned to school and graduated after originally leaving without their degrees,” said Committee on Academic Performance chair Walter Harrison, president of the University of Hartford. “These student-athletes reached the goal of graduation, and I applaud them for their success.”

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