NCAA Reports Rise in Black Athletes' Graduation Rate

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Eighty percent of the athletes that enrolled at the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville between 2007-10 graduated within six years, according to numbers released by the NCAA on Wednesday. The NCAA developed the GSR to account for student-athletes not tracked by the federal graduation rate, which includes transfers into UConn and student-athletes who transferred from UConn in good academic standing. Last year, Marshall recorded an 84 percent GSR (for those entering between 2006 and 2009), while the previous three years yielded rates of 74 percent.

"Every day, in everything they do, our student-athletes, coaches, staff and administration strive for comprehensive excellence, including results in the classroom, athletic venues and community", Penn State Director of Athletics Sandy Barbour said. Six teams have a 100 percent GSR: men's fencing, rifle, pistol, men's volleyball, women's tennis and women's volleyball.

By counting incoming transfer students and mid-year enrollees, the GSR increases the total number of student-athletes tracked for graduation by approximately 37 percent. The GSR provides information for student-athletes who received athletics aid for any period of time during their freshman year. The Wildcats women's basketball team was one of five BIG EAST programs with a 100 percent GSR score, but was the only one from that group to have a matching 100 percent score in the federal graduation rate calculation.

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The current GSR score is calculated from the four entering classes from 2007-2008 through 2010-11. The Wildcats score of 85 percent is the second-highest among CAA Football programs. "The fact that they are leaving as graduates from this world class university is the strongest testament to the hard work of our student-athletes, administrators and coaches who make academics the utmost priority". Villanova led all BIG EAST schools with 14 teams that achieved a flawless 100 percent GSR score, while every one of the 19 Villanova programs to have a score in the latest data matched or exceeded the national average for their sport.

Football (82 pct. vs. national average of 75 pct.) and men's basketball (82 pct. vs. national average of 78 pct.) are among the other Georgia Tech programs that exceed the national average for GSR in their respective sports.

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