The day of reckoning has come for FIU basketball.
The NCAA released its member schools' academic progress ratings Tuesday, and the Golden Panthers' basketball team was deemed ineligible for postseason play in the 2013-2014 season. FIU basketball posted an APR of 750 in 2011-12, according to the NCAA. That brought the team's four-year average down to 858.
A score of 925 is roughly equal to a 50 percent graduation rate. Any school who posts a four-year APR average below that threshold is subject to sanctions from the NCAA. Averages under 900 can lead to postseason bans, as is the case with FIU.
If FIU basketball does not raise it's four-year APR average to over 900 next season, it could be subject to "restricted membership status" with the NCAA, which applies to the entire athletic department. The NCAA does not consider restricted members Division 1 programs.
The FIU athletic department had publicly acknowledged that the forecast was not good for the basketball team for the past few months. Athletic Director Pete Garcia was laudatory of former basketball coach Richard Pitino's hands-on approach in his player's academic lives and the subject was discussed openly when Anthony Evans was introduced as Pitino's replacement.
“It’s important to understand that the student-athletes and coaches who are serving this postseason ban had no part in the actions which led to the punishment," Garcia said in a press release. "I have full confidence that head coach Anthony Evans will continue those efforts moving forward.”
"Whatever we need to do to correct it, we're going to do that," said Evans at his introductory press conference.
FIU is one of six ineligible basketball programs this season. FIU is joined by Alabama State, Grambling State, Mississippi Valley State, Arkansas-Pine Bluff and New Orleans.