The NCAA released the Academic Progress Rate (APR) scores for all Division I schools for 2015-2016 earlier today, and there were a lot of positives for Oklahoma State.
For those who don’t know, the APR measures eligibility and progress toward graduation for athletes. Schools must achieve a score of 930 (out of 1,000) to avoid penalties.
OSU had a very successful year, with 15 programs reaching an APR score of 980 or higher, a mark considered outstanding. Five Oklahoma State teams earned perfect scores (1,000) while five sports improved their scores from last year.
Men’s and Women’s Golf, Women’s Cross Country, Soccer, and Women’s Tennis all earned perfect 1,000s with Women’s Tennis, Women’s Cross Country, and Men’s Golf doing so for a second straight year.
Bravo to Women’s Tennis and Men’s Golf on maintaining a perfect 1,000 Multi-Year Rate. That’s impressive.
Football, Men’s Track & Field, Women’s Basketball, Women’s Golf, and Soccer all improved their scores from last season, which also improved their multi-year rate. The football team’s 2015-16 rate of 974 and multi-year rate of 953 are both the highest in program history since APR scores began in 2003.
The only noticeable drop was by Men’s Tennis who had a 917 APR score this year.
Teams must earn a four-year APR of 930 to compete in championships. As of now no OSU team is in real danger of that. (17 schools across multiple sports earned a postseason ban based on the latest numbers)
It wasn’t that long ago that the football, men’s basketball, and men’s tennis programs were in danger of post season bans due to low APR scores.
In 2012, the football APR was 928, below the 930 threshold. Luckily that was two years before the NCAA began handing out post-season bans. Since then, the football program has pushed it’s APR to 953. That’s a more than 25 point increase in four years. That is real progress.
Likewise, the men’s basketball program in 2012 had an APR score of 928. That has been brought up 27 points to 955.
Men’s tennis was the most concerning; in 2012 it had a four-year APR of 909. Despite having a down year last year, the program’s four-year rate is now 948. That’s a 39 point increase.
I think the positive numbers prove that winning in the classroom is just as high of a priority for Oklahoma State’s athletic department as winning on the field.