Boston College Sports Teams Receive High Academic Marks
Boston College’s varsity sports teams scored big this week when the NCAA released its annual Academic Progress Rate report. The average APR score of the 28 BC teams that were counted was 989 – 19 points above the national average (970). Every BC team scored 960 or above, and six teams – men’s fencing, men’s golf, men’s skiing, women’s lacrosse, women’s skiing and women’s tennis – scored a perfect 1,000.
Boston College’s football team scored a 971 – a full 25 points above the national average. The men’s basketball team scored a 972 – 27 points above the national average.
“Boston College is, above all, an academic institution,” Director of Athletics Gene DeFilippo said. “Obviously we want to field competitive sports teams, and we want to win, which our teams do. But when we recruit student-athletes, we tell them they have an opportunity to receive a degree from one of the greatest universities in the country, and our mission is to ensure that they are successful. Once again, we are very proud of our student-athletes’ accomplishments in the classroom.”
Boston College fields teams in 31 varsity men’s and women’s sports; the NCAA does not include men’s and women’s sailing in the report, and BC’s women’s fencing score was not counted as the team consisted totally of non-scholarship walk-ons.
Every Division I sports team calculates its APR each academic year, based on the eligibility and retention of each scholarship student-athlete. Teams scoring below certain thresholds can face penalties, such as scholarship losses and restrictions on practice and competition. Rates are based on the past four years’ performance. Each scholarship student-athlete may earn one point for being eligible and one point for retention per semester for a total of four points per academic year. The total points are then divided by the number of potential points each team could have earned. That percentage is then multiplied by 1000 to provide each team with its APR. The NCAA has established 925 as the cut-off mark. Any team below that standard may be subject to penalties.
Overall, the Atlantic Coast Conference’s sports teams are among the most successful in the classroom. The average of all ACC teams exceeded 980.
Boston College’s APR Scores:
Baseball 984; women’s field hockey 993; football 971; men’s basketball 972; men’s cross country 990; men’s fencing 1000; men’s golf 1000; men’s ice hockey 965; men’s skiing 1000; men’s soccer 982; men’s swimming 996; men’s tennis 963; men’s indoor track 992; men’s outdoor track 996; softball 996; women’s basketball 979; women’s cross country 993; women’s golf 960; women’s ice hockey 992; women’s lacrosse 1000; women’s rowing 993; women’s skiing 1000; women’s soccer 996; women’s swimming 995; women’s tennis 1000; women’s indoor track 997; women’s outdoor track 997; women’s volleyball 994.
The most surprising number for me was football's. I assumed that recent attrition --with some of it due to academics -- would leave BC in a much bigger hole. But because it is a "progress" snapshot over four years, one outlier shouldn't dramatically change the numbers. Basketball was surprisingly strong (which Skinner never got enough credit for). The only program really lagging is hockey. But the nature of that sport and our position within it will mean many will not graduate.
The press release doesn't mention that as an Athletic Department BC had the third highest national rank behind Notre Dame and Duke. Why does it always have to be Notre Dame and Duke?