June 1, 2011

Eleven of the University of Notre Dame’s athletic programs posted Academic Progress Rate numbers that ranked them best in the nation within their sports – and 12 others produced top-10 APR figures among all NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division I-A) institutions, according to institutional research based on 2011 numbers released late last week by the NCAA.

APR statistics for Irish sports featured nine perfect 1000 scores – in men’s cross country, women’s cross country, men’s golf, women’s golf, women’s rowing, men’s tennis, women’s tennis, men’s indoor track and field and men’s outdoor track and field. Other programs that ranked number one within their sports were men’s ice hockey (at 997) and men’s lacrosse (at 998).

In addition, a dozen other Notre Dame programs ended up with top-10 rankings within their sports. Those were baseball, men’s basketball, men’s fencing, women’s fencing, women’s lacrosse, softball, men’s soccer, women’s soccer, men’s swimming, women’s swimming, women’s indoor track and field and women’s outdoor track and field.

Here are details of Notre Dame programs that had top-10 APR rankings within their sports among the NCAA FBS subset of 120 schools:

— Men’s cross country at 1000 tied for first with 16 other schools.
— Women’s cross country at 1000 tied for first with 15 other schools.
— Men’s golf at 1000 tied for first with 15 other schools.
— Women’s golf at 1000 tied for first with 23 other schools.
— Women’s rowing at 1000 tied for first with California and the U.S. Naval Academy.
— Men’s tennis at 1000 tied for first with 14 other schools.
— Women’s tennis at 1000 tied for first with 19 other schools.
— Men’s indoor track and field at 1000 tied for first with Duke, Louisville and USC.
— Men’s lacrosse at 998 finished first, followed by Duke (997), the U.S. Naval Academy (990), Penn State (986) and Maryland (983).
— Men’s ice hockey at 997 finished first, followed by Ohio State (993), Michigan (988), Western Michigan (986), Connecticut (985) and Minnesota (981).

— Men’s fencing at 992 ranked third behind Boston College (1000) and Duke (1000).
— Women’s indoor track and field at 993 ranked tied for fourth (with Stanford, Virginia and West Virginia), behind Oregon State (1000), Boston College (997) and Texas (994).
— Women’s outdoor track and field at 993 ranked tied for fourth (with Penn State, Stanford, Virginia and West Virginia), behind Boston College (997), the U.S. Air Force Academy (995) and Texas (994).
— Men’s swimming at 994 ranked tied for fifth with Michigan State, behind Duke (997), North Carolina (997), Boston College (996) and the U.S. Naval Academy (995).
— Women’s fencing at 977 ranked fifth, behind Duke (1000), North Carolina (1000), Northwestern (993) and Ohio State (986).
— Women’s lacrosse at 997 ranked tied for fifth (with Stanford and Vanderbilt), behind Boston College (1000), Duke (1000), Northwestern (998) and Rutgers (998).
— Women’s soccer at 997 ranked tied for seventh, behind Connecticut, Indiana, Minnesota, Rutgers, USC and Washington (all at 1000).
— Men’s soccer at 989 ranked seventh, behind Duke (1000), Northwestern (1000), Michigan State (994), Wisconsin (994), Indiana (992) and Penn State (992).
— Softball at 996 tied for eighth (with five other schools), behind Miami of Ohio (1000), Mississippi (1000), Penn State (1000), Arizona State (997), Baylor (997), Mississippi State (997) and Missouri (997).
— Women’s swimming at 997 ranked eighth, behind North Carolina, Northwestern, Rice, Tulane, Vanderbilt (all at 1000), Missouri and Virginia Tech (both at 998).
— Baseball at 989 tied for eighth with Miami (Fla.), behind Duke (1000), Kent State (1000), Texas (998), Virginia (992), Ohio State (991), Vanderbilt (990) and Stanford (990).
— Men’s basketball at 989 ranked tied for ninth with Memphis, behind Texas (1000), Kansas (1000), Michigan State (995), West Virginia (995), Cincinnati (992), BYU (991), Northwestern (990) and Utah (990).

The 2011 report released by the NCAA features a four-year complication of AR data from the 2006-07, 2007-08, 2008-09 and 2009-10 academic years. The APR uses a series of formulas related to student-athlete retention and eligibility to measure the academic progress of all participants who receive grants-in-aid on every team at every NCAA Division I college and university.

The APR provides a real-time look at a team’s academic success each semester, by tracking the academic progress of each student-athlete. The APR includes both retention at institution and academic eligibility in its calculation and provides a clear picture of the academic culture in each sport.