Take a bow, Virginia, William and Mary and Richmond. You, too, ACC and Atlantic 10. Shout outs more specifically to Duke men’s basketball and football, and Clemson football.
Those were among the takeaways last week from the NCAA’s Academic Progress Rates Public Recognition Awards. In its ninth year, the APR measures retention and graduation trends for athletes, and the awards honor the programs that rank among the top-10 percent nationally in their sport.
APRs for all Division I teams are scheduled to be released Wednesday. Consistently low scores can render a program ineligible for postseason.
The rates announced last week and this are four-year aggregates charting the academic years of 2009-10 through 2012-13. A total of 1,049 teams from 275 schools were recognized.
Here are some highlights from our coverage region:
* Richmond paced the state with eight teams — men’s and women’s indoor track, men’s and women’s outdoor track, field hockey, men’s basketball, men’s golf and women’s soccer — ranked among the top-10 percent of their sport, giving the Spiders 25 in the last three years. Chris Mooney’s men’s basketball program has been honored in each of those three years.
Richmond’s haul also led the Newport News-based Atlantic 10 Conference, which saw 58 teams recognized.
(No mention of Richmond is appropriate without offering condolences to the university community after women’s basketball staff members Ginny Doyle and Natalie Lewis died in a hot air balloon accident Friday.)
* Seven William and Mary teams — men’s and women’s tennis, men’s and women’s golf, field hockey, men’s basketball and women’s lacrosse — were honored, the Tribe’s most since eight were cited in 2006-07.
* Virginia’s five recognized teams — men’s cross country, women’s basketball, women’s golf, women’s soccer and national champion men’s tennis — are its most since six in 2008-09 and two shy of its all-time high in 2004-05. At least two Cavaliers programs have been honored in each of the APR’s nine years, but neither football nor men’s basketball has ever cracked the top-10 percent.
* Men’s golf and women’s soccer gave Virginia Tech multiple teams in the top-10 percent for the fifth consecutive year. The Hokies’ high is five in 2009-10, and their lone major-sport recognition was men’s basketball that same academic year.
* A fourth consecutive award in women’s golf headlines Old Dominion’s school-record three honored teams. The others were men’s tennis and women’s soccer.
* Each of the ACC’s 15 schools were honored, led by Notre Dame’s 15 teams, Duke’s 14 and Boston College’s 12. The others ranged from one (Clemson and Pittsburgh) to six (North Carolina). The ACC’s 77 teams were the most of the five power conferences and trailed only the Ivy league (117) and Patriot League (94).
* Four ACC football programs — Boston College, Clemson, Georgia Tech and Duke — were honored, three men’s basketball — Duke, Miami and Pitt.
* Dabo Swinney’s Clemson football team and Mike Krzyzewski’s Duke basketball team have made the top-10 percent four consecutive years.
* Sixteen programs from ACC schools are among the 146 nationally that have attained the top-10 percent in their respective sport in each of the APR’s nine years. Here’s the list.
BOSTON COLLEGE (2): Skiing and men’s outdoor track.
DUKE (5): Football, men’s golf, men’s soccer, men’s indoor track, women’s fencing.
GEORGIA TECH (1): Men’s golf.
SYRACUSE (1): Women’s cross country.
NORTH CAROLINA (2): Women’s fencing and women’s golf.
NOTRE DAME (5): Men’s cross country, men’s golf, men’s indoor and outdoor track, and softball.
Duke is the only Bowl Subdivision football program honored all nine years. No men’s basketball program from a power conference has made the cut every year.
Richmond men’s indoor track also has earned honors nine straight years.
Here's a link to the NCAA's APR story and database.
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