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Iowa Perfect Again in NCAA's Academic Test

May 14, 2014

IOWA CITY, Iowa - Paced by all-time high scores in nine sports programs, all 24 of the University of Iowa's intercollegiate athletics programs are achieving at a rate that surpasses the national benchmark for academic success established by the NCAA, according to an annual report released today.

The NCAA's Academic Progress Rate (APR) report for 2013-14 revealed that - for the fifth consecutive year - all of Iowa's 24 sports programs were well above the 930 threshold that signals a red flag with respect to academic progress. The highlights of results for the UI's student-athletes include:

  • All 24 of the UI's sports programs scored well above 930, the threshold that triggers NCAA sanctions ranging from loss of practice time to participation in national championships participation.

  • Nine UI sports teams posted all-time high scores. That list of sports includes Iowa's football, men's basketball, baseball, men's golf, men's swimming and diving, women's rowing, women's soccer, women's swimming and diving, and volleyball.

  • The APR for 16 of the UI sports teams was better than the national average for their peer group. The list of 16 includes Iowa football, men's basketball, women's basketball, and wrestling programs.

  • Men's golf and baseball ranked among the top 10 percent of their peers and were honored last week by the NCAA for that accomplishment.

  • Men's golf scored a perfect 1,000.

  • The APR for 15 of Iowa's programs either increased or held steady year-over-year.

  • The largest increases in APR were achieved by Iowa's men's gymnastics (plus 20) and men's basketball (plus 18) teams.





"Once again student-athletes at the University of Iowa have demonstrated their commitment to the pursuit of their academic goals is as vigorous as their pursuit of success in athletics competition. I am particularly proud of the student-athletes in those sports that achieved at a record-setting pace."
UI Director of Athletics
Gary Barta


"Once again student-athletes at the University of Iowa have demonstrated their commitment to the pursuit of their academic goals is as vigorous as their pursuit of success in athletics competition. I am particularly proud of the student-athletes in those sports that achieved at a record-setting pace," said Gary Barta, the UI's director of athletics.


"As always, I also want to take this opportunity to both thank and congratulate our coaching and support staffs in our athletics department as well as all of our many partners across the UI campus. All of these individuals play an instrumental role in helping our student-athletes achieve success in the `Graduate' category of our "Win. Graduate. Do it Right." commitment."

The Academic Progress Rate measures eligibility and retention of student-athletes competing on every NCAA Division I sports team. This year's APR scores are based on a multi-year rate that averages scores from the 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12, and 2012-13 academic years.

The goal of the NCAA's academic performance program is improvement, not punishment. Not only does the program ensure accountability for student-athletes, teams, and institutions, but it also provides fairness by considering individual circumstances per team and school. This year marks the 10th year of APR data for most teams.

Beginning in 2012-13, teams must have earned a minimum four-year APR of 900 or a 930 average over the most recent two years to be eligible to participate in the NCAA championship. An APR of 930 projects a Graduation Success Rate of approximately 50 percent.

For 2014-15 championships, teams must earn a 930 four-year average or a 940 average over the most recent two years to participate in the NCAA championship. In 2015-16 and beyond, teams must earn a four-year APR of 930 to be eligible to participate in post-season competition.

Fans can read the complete NCAA report HERE.

Today's news complements the NCAA report on graduation rates last October which revealed that, once again, student-athletes at the UI outperformed their peers nationally academically and set another record for graduation success.

Student-athletes that entered the University of Iowa in the fall of 2006 graduated at a rate of 72 percent, according to the NCAA. That mark - which uses the federal government benchmark for graduation success - means UI student-athletes have graduated at a rate of 70 percent or better in four of the last five years.

According to the NCAA, the graduation rate for all student-athletes nationwide who enrolled in the fall of 2006 was 65 percent. The graduation rate for all students who enrolled in the UI in the fall of 2006 was 70 percent.

The UI also set a new record by posting a score of 88 percent in the NCAA's "Graduation Success Rate," or GSR. That mark was one point better than last year's record-setting mark of 87 percent. According to the NCAA, the GSR for all NCAA Division I institutions was 81 percent.

The NCAA introduced the GSR in 2005 to more accurately assess the academic success of student-athletes. Unlike the federal graduation rate, the GSR holds institutions accountable for transfer student-athletes. The GSR also accounts for mid-year enrollees and is calculated for every sport.

Four UI teams - field hockey, women's golf, softball, and tennis - each scored a perfect 100 in the GSR. For the UI women's golf team, the perfect score was its fourth straight 100. For the UI field hockey team, its perfect score marked the third straight year that it has scored 100 on the GSR.

Nine additional UI teams scored in the 90s and 14 UI teams had GSR scores that exceeded the national average for their peers. Specifically, Iowa's football team earned a score of 81 on the GSR, which was 11 points better than the national average of 70. Iowa's men's basketball team scored an 88 on the GSR, which was 20 points better than the national average of 68. The Iowa women's basketball team also bested the national averaged, registering a 91 GSR against an 86 scored by its peer group.