Today, the NCAA released its Academic Progress Rates, a metric for calculating a team's academic performance. Teams are recognized for high APR achievement but also punished for low scores, including potential ineligibility from postseason play.
The APR rates used to determine academic consequences are based on a four-year rolling average. The current scores are the average calculated from the end of the 2012-13 academic year.
The Washington State women's volleyball team faces a Level One penalty after receiving a multi-year APR of 929. That score would be enough to declare the Cougars ineligible from postseason play, but because the team has shown significant academic progress they were granted a lesser penalty. According to the NCAA, "Level One penalties focus on practice restrictions, allowing teams to use that time to focus on academics. Teams facing this penalty lose four hours and one day of practice time per week in season, replaced with academic activities. This year, 42 teams face this level of penalty."
In this case the Cougars are still paying for the performance of the team under the previous coaching staff, which scored and 837 in 2010-11, their final year. The volleyball team posted a perfect score of 1,000 in the 2012-13 academic year under coach Jen Greeny. In fact, nine WSU programs posted perfect scores of 1,000 this year, although only women's basketball has a perfect 1,000 four-year average.
They were followed closely by women's cross country (991), men's golf (986) and women's golf (981).
"“I am very appreciative and proud of our student-athletes, coaches and staff for their continued dedication and efforts in reaching for academic success, and the most recent NCAA data fully supports their hard work,” WSU athletic director Bill Moos said in a press release. “They place their academic pursuits on par with their athletic endeavors and I continue to be pleased at what they are able to accomplish and how well they represent this fine university.”
More on WSU's APR performance after the jump.
The APR is calculated by giving each student athlete one point for staying in school and one point for getting good grades. The point total is then divided by the number of points possible and multiplied by 1,000 to calculated the final APR for that semester. Each Division I sports team calculates its APR each academic year.
Here is a sortable database if you want to explore how certain teams, schools, conferences, etc. performed.
The NCAA also provides APR adjustments for students who transfer to another four years school after earning a 2.6 grade-point average and those who leave school to pursue a professional career while in good academic standing.
The Cougars ranked ninth among Pac-12 schools in football with an APR of 944, well above the 930 threshold. Stanford finished first in the conference with an APR of 984, while rival California ranked last with an APR of 938.
The WSU men's basketball team placed last in the conference with an APR of 938, narrowly avoiding academic penalties.
That's a pretty steep drop from their score for the 2011-12 academic year of 957, which already included the departures of Klay Thompson and DeAngelo Casto. Nor would it include Danny Lawhorn's departure this year.
But when former coach Ken Bone dismissed Reggie Moore from the team it likely cost them 38 APR points, and could have cost double that if he was in poor academic standing.
Stanford also paced the conference in men's basketball by scoring a cool 1,000.