The NCAA released a multi-year APR that tracks both institutions and individual coaches and the news for Longhorn athletics, particularly any program lucky enough to have Dr. Randa Ryan in charge of its academic progress, is excellent.
Here's how Longhorn football, baseball, men's track, basketball all stacked up.
Sport (N) / Multiyear APR / 2008-2009 APR
Basketball 1000 1000
Baseball 986 1000
Men's Track 988 989
Football 947 959
Randa Ryan is in charge of all Longhorn academic support except for football.
Brian Davis is in charge of football.
The AAS had some useful information on APR calculations:
The score for Brown's team was above the yearly Division I national average of 944. The national average for baseball is 954, while men's basketball is 940.
Our basketball performance is off of the charts vis a vis peers. And a very useful comparator for football given that the academic profile of basketball players is lower than or the same as football players. Football's philosophy seems focused on "good enough" while basketball is blowing it out of the water.
Men's track is also an intriguing comparator.
All performances were positive. But if you're someone that's into maximization...
Unlike graduation rates, which typically involve a six-year period, the APR is designed to be a real-time measure of how current athletes are progressing toward their degrees.
This eliminates some of the unfairness in earlier standards with guys going pro, transfers, arbitrary six year windows, or even deaths. It's not about graduation rates so much as appropriate academic progress.
The math of the APR is a little complicated, but a score of 925 out of a possible 1.000 translates into roughly a 60 percent graduation rate. A score below 925 can result in NCAA penalties to a program. Scores below 900 can result in bigger, historic penalties including reduction in financial aid and postseason bans.
The penalties are real and significant. Indeed, our basketball and baseball programs found themselves under this Mendoza Line not long ago. Both Barnes and Garrido needed help or they would risk facing potential penalties.
Enter Randa Ryan and her support staff...
For the 2003-04 school year — the first when APRs were publicly tracked by the NCAA — the APR for Barnes' basketball team was 847. The next year it was 898. The APR for Garrido's team that first year was 917. In 2004-05, it slumped to 839. Garrido now has had two perfect years in a row, while Barnes has had three.
Barnes has been batting 1.000 for three years straight, Augie for two. You'll recall that guys like DJ Augustin - an All-American with a certain NBA career - was pulling down a 4.0 and Kevin Durant - even though he knew he was a lottery pick - was still attending class and making academic progress.
If you'd like to search by an individual coach or institution.
Take these rankings with a grain of salt when comparing program to program. Very low scores are almost always indicative of problems in terms of the student-athletes being recruited, support structures, or emphasis from the coach, but average or even high scores can be deceptive if the university has athlete academic tracks whose sole purpose is to keep guy's eligible. John Calipari and Bob Huggins have solid career APRs, if that gives you any indication.