May 12, 2010
WACO, Texas - Baylor's men's and women's golf programs have received public recognition awards from the NCAA Division I Academic Performance Program for having Academic Progress Rates (APR) scores which rank among the top 10 percent within their respective sport. It marks the second straight year coach Sylvia Ferdon's women's golf program has been recognized by the NCAA for academic excellence, while it's the first honor for coach Greg Priest's men's program.
"I am very proud of the academic performance of all of our student-athletes and particularly the men's and women's golf teams," said Baylor Director of Athletics Ian McCaw. "This success is a credit to the dedication of our student-athletes, academic commitment of our coaches and the outstanding work of the student-athlete services staff. Moreover, Baylor's faculty members play a key role in the academic success of our student-athletes and are to be commended for the outstanding job they do in the classroom."
All-told, Baylor has received five APR public recognition awards since the NCAA launched the program five years ago. Coach Steve Smith's baseball program received BU's first APR recognition award in 2007, followed by the men's basketball and women's golf teams being honored in 2009, and this year's recognition of both golf programs.
Both golf teams registered APR scores of 1,000, which is the highest score a program may receive. Baylor was one 48 men's golf programs nationally to be honored, and joined Oklahoma State as the only other Big 12 program recognized. The women's golf team was one of 62 nationally to receive an APR recognition award and was joined by fellow Big 12 programs Texas and Missouri.
In the latest NCAA AR report, which covers the 2005-06 through 2008-09 academic years, every Baylor program registered an APR score of at least 927, no teams are subject to penalty and 11 had scores higher than 950--women's golf (1000), men's golf (1000), softball (983), women's cross country (982), women's soccer (982), men's basketball (980), women's tennis (980), men's cross country (979), baseball (978), women's basketball (957) and women's indoor track & field (952).
Seven Big 12 institutions earned at least two 2010 public APR awards--Baylor, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas and Texas A&M with KU, OU and UT each receiving three awards. The public recognition awards are part of the broad-based NCAA Division I academic reform effort.
According to the NCAA, 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 public recognition awards this year posted APR scores ranging from 978 to a perfect 1,000. The number of teams in some sports may exceed 10 percent depending on how many achieved perfect scores.
The 841 teams publicly recognized this year for high achievement represent 13.4 percent of the approximately 6,297 Division I teams. The list includes 448 women's teams and 319 men's or mixed squads. A total of 205 institutions, out of 331 Division I colleges and universities, placed at least one team on the top APR list.
The NCAA will release multi-year APR scores for all Division I sports teams, including those that received public recognition awards later this spring. That announcement will also include immediate and historical penalties for low-performing teams.