Men’s hoops 952, football 964, women’s basketball 981
Men’s basketball 926, women’s basketball 959
Men’s basketball 911, football 946, women’s basketball 990
Men’s basketball 1,000, women’s basketball 986
Men’s basketball 995, football 950, women’s basketball 981
Men’s basketball 1,000, football 970, women’s basketball 968
INDIANAPOLIS — The NCAA’s new academic requirements could give new meaning to the madness of March.
On Wednesday, a record 10 men’s basketball teams including three-time national champion Connecticut were banned from this year’s NCAA tournament because of poor Academic Progress Rate scores.
The penalties affect seven conferences, each of which must adapt to a new landscape for their league tournaments.
Four conferences – the Big East, Ohio Valley, Southland and Southwest Athletic – said the banned teams cannot compete in their league tournaments and the adjustments will take a toll.
“We’ll have to adjust the bracket accordingly,” Dan Gavitt, Big East associate commissioner for men’s basketball, said Wednesday. “We would accommodate it in such a way that it would work. We would just have to eliminate a game and move someone up on the line.”
Joining the Huskies on the sideline next March will be Arkansas-Pine Bluff, California-Riverside, Cal State Bakersfield, Jacksonville State, Mississippi Valley State, North Carolina-Wilmington, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, Toledo and Towson.
Cal State Bakersfield, which became a full-fledged Division I member in 2010-11 and does not yet have a conference affiliation in basketball, could still be removed from the banned list because some of the school’s data is still being reviewed.
Each of the schools fell below the mandated four-year cutline of 900 or the two-year cutline of 930 and will face additional sanctions. UConn, which had a four-year score of 889 and a two-year score of 902, must replace four hours of practice time with academic activities each week.
The APR measures the classroom performance of every Division I team. This year’s data calculates rates from 2007-08 through 2010-11.
Naturally, UConn drew the most attention as the first BCS school to face a postseason ban based solely on sub-par academics. The Huskies have been an NCAA tourney regular since 1990, winning 48 postseason games and national titles in 1999, 2004 and 2011.
Seeing the Huskies make the list of banned teams was no surprise, though.
UConn officials knew they wouldn’t make the cutline last year and sought for a waiver from the ban this spring when it asked the NCAA to use the two most recent years of data. That argument was rejected. The Huskies now plan to make one more plea at a hearing this summer in front of the committee on academic performance.
“I hope my colleagues come to the realization that if they change the rules and make this in effect that the NCAA has to change the way it review the data,” Connecticut athletic director Warde Manuel said. “That’s the only fair thing to do.”
It’s unlikely the committee will give in now.
“I do not expect us to make any changes retrospectively,” said committee chairman Walter Harrison, president at the University of Hartford. “If we make changes, and I’m not sure that we will, would be prospectively.”
Only three football teams received postseason bans – Hampton, North Carolina A&T and Texas Southern. All are members of the Football Championship Subdivision and are considered historically black colleges or universities. The only other teams to get postseason bans were Central Connecticut State in men’s soccer and Northern Colorado in men’s wrestling.
In all, 54 teams fell below the 900 mark with roughly 80 percent (43) of them coming from what the NCAA defines as limited-resource schools.
Despite the growth in penalties, the overall numbers are improving.
The new four-year average of 973 represents a three-point increase over last year’s report, and scores in each of the four most visible sports also improved. Baseball jumped six points to 965, men’s basketball had a five-point increase to 950, while women’s basketball (970) and football (948) both improved by two points.
Overall single-year APR averages have increased every year since 2004-05, the second year data was collected, though only slightly from 2009-10 (973.8) to 2010-11 (974.0)
The most recent one-year scores for men’s basketball and baseball both decreased from last year’s report. Men’s basketball went from 951.6 to 950.9, while baseball slipped from 966.6 to 963.9 over the same period. In football and women’s basketball, the one-year numbers both increased slightly in this year’s report.
NCAA President Mark Emmert acknowledged both the good and bad of the report.
“We still have room for improvement,” he said. “The NCAA’s overall goal, of course, is to blend academics and athletics. The amount of support among university presidents for these eligibility standards remains extremely strong.”