April 24, 2008
EVANSTON, Ill. -- Today, eight Northwestern teams are being honored by the NCAA with public recognition awards for their latest multi-year Academic Progress Rate scores, covering the time period between 2003-07.
Teams honored for being in the top 10 percent were: baseball, men's soccer, men's tennis, wrestling, women's fencing, women's golf, women's lacrosse and women's volleyball. With eight of its 19 varsity teams being honored, Northwestern ranks fifth nationally among FBS schools (formerly known as Division I-A) for highest percentage of varsity sports (42.1 percent) earning public recognition awards.
These teams posted multi-year APR scores in the top 10 percent of all squads in their respective sports. The public recognition awards are part of the broad Division I academic reform effort.
"All of our programs continue to score well with the NCAA's new academic reform system," said Jim Phillips, Northwestern's director of athletics. "These eight programs, however, lead the way at Northwestern. We have tremendous student-athletes who continue to excel at the highest level - this is a credit to our coaches and student-athletes who are achieving excellence both in the classroom and on the courts and fields."
The APR provides a real-time look at a team's academic success each semester by tracking the academic progress of each student-athlete. The APR includes eligibility, retention, and graduation in the calculation and provides a clear picture of the academic culture in each sport. High-performing teams receiving awards posted APR scores ranging from 965 to a perfect 1,000.
Overall, 712 Division I sports teams are being recognized. Last year, a total of 839 teams were recognized. There are fewer awards this year than last year because there are fewer teams with perfect scores. The number of teams in some sports may exceed 10 percent depending on how many achieved perfect 1,000 APR scores. In some sports, teams had to maintain a perfect score over the four-year period in order to be recognized.
Multi-year APR scores for all 6,272 Division I sports teams, including the teams receiving public recognition awards, will be announced May 6. The announcement also will include immediate and historical penalties for low-performing teams.