COLLEGE STATION, Texas – The NCAA released its annual Academic Progress Rate (APR) update on Wednesday and the Texas A&M men’s basketball program saw its individual season APR score rise for the third consecutive season, posting a program-best tying score of 980 for the most recent reporting year, 2012-13.
The program was not accessed any penalties and remains post-season eligible for the upcoming 2014-15 campaign.
Nine Aggie basketball players have graduated during this reporting period and three additional players are expected to graduate by December of 2014. The combined efforts of the men’s basketball team and the academic support staff have led to a combined team grade-point average of 3.14 in the spring of 2013 and a 2.71 average in the fall of 2013.
Head coach Billy Kennedy shared his thoughts on the program’s academic progress.
What challenges has the APR presented as you build the program?
“This year’s score is partially based off two teams prior to my arrival, because of that we’ve been handcuffed in several ways. Particularly, it has forced us to keep guys who don’t meet our requirements because we want to ensure our team is postseason eligible before we even play a game. We’ve had really good scores the last two years and that has positioned us to get our program back into good standing where we can recruit the kind of student-athletes that can be successful here, both in the classroom and basketball-wise to allow us to compete for championships.”
The program’s academic standing has steadily improved in the last few years, what emphasis have you and your staff placed on that?
“Our APR has steadily improved because we’ve been able to get our guys committed to graduating and not leave the program early. It’s also improved because we’ve really tried to recruit the type of kids that are real student-athletes and want to get a degree while doing the right things. Our support team has been outstanding and has really been more hands on the last two years than it has been in the past.”