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NCAA Upholds One-Year Post Season Bans on FAMU Football an Men's Basketball

Programs excluded from postseason play and honors for the 2014-15 seasons resulting from below-standard APR performances over the past four years


Florida A&M University (FAMU) has received notice from the NCAA’s Committee on Academic Performance (CAP) that the football and men’s basketball teams will not be permitted to participate in 2014-15 postseason tournaments after falling below NCAA Academic Progress Rate (APR) standards, and appeals of the postseason ban were denied, Director of Athletics Kellen Winslow, Sr. announced Wednesday.

“We take responsibility for our failure to meet academic performance standards set by the NCAA,” said Winslow. “I am confident that the processes and procedures that we have put in place, along with the adoption of best practices, will address this issue. We look forward to overcoming this challenge and returning to post season competition as quickly as possible.”

FAMU’s sanctions are a result of the multiyear APR calculations – a four-year measurement covering the academic years 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13.

The men’s basketball’s multiyear APR score was 900 and football’s score was 885, both falling short of the 910 benchmark set forth by the NCAA for limited resource institutions.

“We are implementing APR improvement plans that have been recognized and approved by the NCAA. This demonstrates that we have identified critical issues and initiatives with measurable goals, including specific steps to achieve those goals,” Winslow added.

Although neither team will be eligible for Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) regular season championships in 2014-15, games played against conference opponents will count in the standings. Rattler football and basketball players will be eligible for all individual conference honors during the season.

FAMU President Elmira Mangum, Ph.D., expressed her expectations for a sound academic environment in Athletics. “FAMU is committed to the success of our student-athletes both on and off the playing field,” said Mangum. “Their academic success is our first priority and we take the regulations of the NCAA very seriously because they are designed to be applied consistently across all programs, at all member institutions, and represent best practice.”

FAMU’s APR improvement plan includes a partnership between Athletics and the Office of University Retention to enhance academic support to all athletes. The initiative includes monitored study hall and tutorial sessions, resources to enhance study and time management skills; and required coaching staff attendance in Academic Eligibility Rules Education sessions, to name a few.

Next year's multiyear APR will be the first to reflect the implementation of the corrective measures.


FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What is penalty against FAMU?
The FAMU football team and the men’s basketball team are ineligible for 2014-15 postseason championship tournaments resulting from falling below the NCAA academic progress rate (APR).

What is APR?

The APR is a measure used by the NCAA to determine whether or not players from any particular team are in good academic standing. The APR score is calculated using a combination of retention of student-athletes and their academic eligibility each season. A perfect APR score would be 1000.

Is this related to one particular season?

No. The APR scores cover a rolling four-year window. The penalty today would cover the teams’ academic performance from 2009-10 through 2012-13.

How does a team lose points?
Teams lose points when a scholarship player is not academically eligible to play at the end of a semester or if a scholarship player leaves at the end of a semester and does not have a minimum 2.6 GPA.

Will this impact other sports at FAMU?
No. Each team has its own APR score and no other programs are affected by this penalty.

When will the length of the penalty be over?
The penalty is for one year, the 2014-15 season. It affects no other year, as long as the APR score is back over the minimum threshold or the program meets certain improvement requirements. All signs point to this being the case.


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