FAYETTEVILLE – A school-record five University of Arkansas intercollegiate athletic programs earned public recognition awards for their exemplary academic performance by the NCAA on Wednesday.
The Razorbacks’ men’s golf, men’s tennis, gymnastics, swimming and diving and volleyball teams were honored for their standing among the top 10 percent of academic performing teams in the country in their respective sports in the multi-year Academic Progress Rate (APR) for the 2011-12 academic year. All five Razorback programs honored earned a perfect 1,000 multiyear APR rate based on scores from the 2008-09, 2009-10, 2010-11 and 2011-12 academic years.
The five teams shattered the previous school mark set in 2010-11 when two Razorback programs were recognized and nearly matched the seven total public award recognitions earned previously by the University of Arkansas. Gymnastics earned its third-consecutive public recognition award while men’s tennis was honored for the second-consecutive year. Men’s golf, swimming and diving and volleyball each earned a public recognition award for the first time since the awards were implemented eight years ago.
"I am very proud that we continue to see the results of a program-wide commitment to achieving personal bests in the classroom while advancing student-athletes on a path to their degree," Long said. "I congratulate all of the coaches and members of the student-athlete success staff who have assisted in this success. Most importantly, I want to congratulate our student-athletes for their dedication and commitment to the University of Arkansas that resulted in this national recognition."
APR statistics include a real-time look at a team’s academic success each semester by tracking the academic progress of each student-athlete on scholarship taking into account eligibility, retention and graduation. The APR benchmark multi-year rate for that 2011-12 was 925. Teams receiving public recognition awards this year posted APR scores ranging from 978 to 1,000. The number of teams in some sports exceeded 10 percent depending on the number of perfect scores. The NCAA is announcing multi-year APR scores for all Division I teams on June 11.
The University of Arkansas has earned a public recognition award each year since the program was initiated. Women’s golf was honored for the 2004-05, 2005-06, 2006-07 and 2007-08 seasons. Gymnastics was recognized in 2009-10 and in 2010-11 with men’s tennis. This year, five programs were recognized including three programs for the first time.