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Teams earn top academic progress recognition from NCAA

June 22, 2012 : Liberty University News Service

Liberty University Athletics has once again excelled in the classroom, with two teams earning Public Recognition Awards from the NCAA for multi-year (four-year) academic progress and seven teams earning perfect scores on the Academic Progress Report (APR) for 2010-11.

Liberty's men's soccer and women's lacrosse teams were among the more than 950 teams recently honored by the NCAA with Public Recognition Awards, given each year to teams with the most recent multi-year APRs in the top 10 percent in each sport. Both of Liberty's teams are earning the Public Recognition Awards for the first time.

"These teams prove that it is possible to not only balance academic and athletic commitment, as most student-athletes do; but to exceed standards and post outstanding academic scores," said NCAA President Mark Emmert. "The drive and determination shown in the classroom and on the field by these men and women represent what it means to be an NCAA student-athlete."

Each year, the NCAA tracks the classroom performance of student-athletes on every Division I team through the annual scorecard of academic achievement, known as APR. The score measures eligibility and retention each semester or quarter and provides a clear picture of the academic culture in each sport. The most recent APRs are multi-year rates based on scores from the 2007-08, 2008-09, 2009-10, and 2010-11 academic years.

The 954 teams publicly recognized this year for high achievement represent 560 women's teams and 394 men's or mixed squads. A total of 263 schools, out of 347 Division I colleges and universities, placed at least one team on the top APR list.

The full scores were released this week, with all of Liberty's athletics programs coming in with a multi-year rate over 940 and eight programs receiving a multi-year rate above 980 (men's golf, men's soccer, women's basketball, women's cross country, women's lacrosse, softball, women's outdoor track, and volleyball).

The following programs had perfect APR scores for 2010-11: men's cross country, men's golf, men's soccer, women's cross country, women's lacrosse, women's tennis, and volleyball.

Liberty's athletics programs finished the 2010-11 academic year with a combined 970 APR score, giving Liberty Athletics a combined 968 APR multi-year rate.