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MSU, Ole Miss post strong NCAA APR scores


From Special Reports



INDIANAPOLIS -- Mississippi State and Ole Miss turned in strong seasons in the NCAA's annual report of Academic Progress Rates, the association announced Wednesday. 


In the latest multi-year rate, the MSU women's tennis team posted a perfect 1000 to lead all of school's varsity sports. 


The men's tennis team, which advanced to the NCAA quarterfinals after winning the Southeastern Conference tournament title, paced MSU's men's sports with a 983. 


The women's cross country, women's golf, women's softball, women's tennis, women's track and field, and women's volleyball teams earned 1000 APRs for the 2016-17 year. 


"Our NCAA Academic Progress Rates continue to excel, and that is a credit to our student-athletes, coaches and support staff," MSU Director of Athletics John Cohen said. "This academic year, our student-athletes produced the highest cumulative GPA on record at Mississippi State. I am very proud of the accomplishments of our teams in the classroom. Today's APR announcement is another reflection of their outstanding commitment." 


The softball team was the second-highest among MSU's varsity sports with a 994, its best multi-year rate since 2009-10 and nine points above the national average. 


The national finalist MSU women's basketball team made a five-point jump to a 987, which is the second-highest in program history, and five points above the national average. 


A year after tying its best multi-year APR rate, the football set a new program standard with a 975, which ranks 11 points above the national average. 


Ole Miss also posted its highest overall APR score in program history with an average of 989. 


Ole Miss is coming off yet another semester that broke the program record for highest cumulative grade-point average, and with Federal Graduation Rates and Graduation Success Rates at all-time highs as well, the newly-released APR scores pile onto a growing list of academic successes for the athletic department. 


"Our student-athletes have committed to the hard work that it takes to be champions in the classroom, as well as on the courts and fields," Ole Miss Senior Associate Athletics Director for Student-Athlete Development Derek Cowherd said. "We are so very proud of their work ethic and thankful for faculty and staff, as well as those in the athletic department who support them in their quest for excellence." 


Of the 16 sports Ole Miss offers, 11 posted scores of 1,000. The men's golf and women's tennis teams own perfect multi-year scores of 1,000, which last week earned them the NCAA Public Recognition Award. 


The overall program score of 989 is six points above the current national average of 983. Ole Miss also ranks toward the top of the SEC in several sports, as the Rebels are tied for first in both men's golf and women's tennis, while the men's track and field team ranks second. 


The APR is derived from data submitted for the 2013-14, 2014-15, 2015-16 and 2016-17 academic years. 


To compete in the 2018-19 postseason, teams must achieve a 930 four-year APR. NCAA members chose the 930 standard because that score predicts, on average, a 50 percent graduation rate for teams at that APR level. Additionally, teams must earn at least a 930 four-year APR to avoid penalties. 


The Academic Progress Rate (APR) is a measure of classroom performance related to all participating NCAA Division I athletic programs. It is considered to be the NCAA's "real-time" snapshot of academic progress, graduation and retention. Schools that fail to reach the NCAA's minimum score can receive penalties that include loss of scholarships, public admonishment, restrictions on practice and competition and even expulsion from the NCAA.



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