Cal’s sports report cards are out. And the situation looks good! Yes, the Academic Progress Report was released for 2008. What’s the APR, you ask, hypothetical question construct? Here is some general information:
Academic Progress Rate (APR). The APR is the fulcrum upon which the entire academic-reform structure rests. Developed as a more real-time assessment of teams’ academic performance than the six-year graduation-rate calculation provides, the APR awards two points each term to student-athletes who meet academic-eligibility standards and who remain with the institution. A team’s APR is the total points earned by the team at a given time divided by the total points possible.
Ok, so you get two points per term per athlete. But what is the goal each team is attempting to reach?
Immediate penalties? Historic penalties? Speak English! Does this mean there’s a chance an athlete might get tarred and feathered??? Damn, calm down non-existant computo-being, we’ll answer all your questions. You ask more questions than my wife! But at least, fewer than my mistress.
Immediate penalties. Known also as contemporaneous penalties, these are the most immediate penalties in the academic-reform structure. They occur when a team with an APR score below 925 loses a student-athlete who would not have been academically eligible had he or she returned (an "0-for-2" student-athlete). An immediate penalty means that the team cannot re-award that grant-in-aid to another player. In effect, a team’s financial aid limit is reduced by the amount of countable aid awarded to the student-athlete who did not earn eligibility and was not retained.
Historical penalties. While immediate penalties are designed to be rehabilitative in nature, the historically based penalties carry more significant sanctions for teams that the APR identifies as chronic under-performers. The penalties will be incremental in nature, beginning with a warning once teams fall below a 900 APR cut score. Historical penalties progress to practice and financial aid restrictions, postseason bans and ultimately restricted membership in Division I. Teams scoring below 900 are subject to further examination to determine if historical penalties are warranted. Specifically, teams are compared against the bottom 10 percent within their sport, general student body academic performance, and performance expectation given the resources of the institution.
There’s a lot more information to the situation, but that is a sort of general overview straight from the horse’s mouth. But enough of these bland generalities, what about Cal? Here is a link to Cal’s APR. The good news:
Cal is above both cut scores in all sports. In some of the racing sports, like Men’s XC and Track/Field, the numbers are close. And, the biggest eye popper is that men’s basketball is very close, too. It posted a score of 942. However, men’s basketball across the board is not very good. The average score is 928, barely above the cut score of 925. A comparison of poor scoring sports might illustrate the difference. Men’s XC had a score of 947, which translated to a percentile rank of 20th-30th in its particular sport.
Men’s basketball had a slighter lower score, but had a percentile rank of 60th-70th in its sport. This is not to excuse the poor showing by men’s basketball, but instead to give a fuller context for what the number 9-4-2 means. In better news, football has a score of 967, which puts it in the 80th-90th percentile. Congratulations to coach Tedford for maintaining both on the field and off the field success.
Here are the rankings for the two money sports. First, let’s look at basketball. The average for basketball, as noted previously, is 928.
1. Oregon - 975
2. UCLA - 968
3. Stanford - 954
4. Washington - 943
5. Cal - 942
6. OSU - 935
7. Arizona - 933
8. ASU - 905
8. Wazzu - 905
10. USC - 863 (!!!! They got dinged for this)
Cal is in the middle of the pack here. Now, let’s look at Football. The average for football is 934.
1. Stanford - 986
2. Cal - 967
3. USC - 948
3. Washington - 948
5. UCLA - 941
6. ASU - 933
7. OSU - 926
8. Oregon - 921
9. Wazzu - 916
10. Arizona - 903
Cal is way up at the top. USC was the only team to receive penalties (as noted above). As a minor note, the score for "private schools" is higher than the score for "public schools" pretty much across the board. Ammo for the Stanford complaintniks????? Only time will tell!