APR for coaches is in; early Midnight Madness is out
The Division I Board of Directors expressed continued support for the concept of an Academic Progress Rate for head coaches in all sports at its October 30 meeting in Indianapolis. While the presidents did not approve a specific proposal at this meeting, they did provide further guidance to the Committee on Academic Performance (the group that will develop the model) on what information should be included and to what extent it should be available to the general public.
The Board wants a “lifetime APR” of a coach that would follow the individual from job to job and be publicly available, both as an incentive for coaches to be more involved with the academic success of their student-athletes and to better inform hiring decisions on campus. Though the presidents acknowledged that developing a coach APR might prove logistically challenging, they regard it as an initiative worth advancing.
A subcommittee of the Board, working with CAP Chair and Hartford President Walter Harrison, studied the issue and will remain available to review models that the committee designs.
In addition to the coach APR issue, the Board also adopted emergency legislation to prevent basketball coaches from using a rule allowing two hours of skill instruction outside of the playing season to conduct public events promoting the program (a “Midnight Madness” event, for example).
Several institutions did that this year, which prompted both the National Association of Basketball Coaches and members of the NCAA Basketball Academic Enhancement Group to say using the skill instruction rule in that way is inappropriate, since it gives those schools an advantage on publicity and recruiting.
“When the Board of Directors passed this (skill development) legislation, it was done at the request of coaches so they could work with the student-athletes,” NCAA President Myles Brand said. “Some took advantage of that. (The public events were) not its intended purpose.”
The Board also took steps toward helping two-year transfer student-athletes be more successful at four-year institutions by sponsoring legislation that would require 2-4 transfers to be academically certified by the Eligibility Center. The Committee on Academic Performance recommended the idea as a way to facilitate more data collection on the academic profile of a 2-4 transfer.
The legislation will enter the 2008-09 legislative cycle and receive initial consideration at the NCAA Convention in January 2009. The proposal would require certification before the end of the student-athlete’s first academic term of full-time enrollment and would provide data about the high school performance of 2-4 transfers that could be used in making future policy and legislative decisions.
If approved, the legislation would work hand-in-hand with a new CAP policy that will require institutions to submit data about the academic performance of 2-4 transfers at the two-year college beginning with the 2009 data collection. The specific data to be collected will be decided after membership comment on the effort.
The Board members supported the need for more data to inform decisions on 2-4 transfers, indicating a desire to collaborate with representatives from the two-year college community to create a stronger system of higher education. Data collected from the Eligibility Center and as a result of the new CAP policy will be used to form future policies and proposals designed to help 2-4 transfers succeed at NCAA institutions.
In other business, the Board:
• Sponsored legislation for the 2008-09 legislative cycle requiring final transcripts for early qualifiers be submitted to the Eligibility Center by November 15 of the student-athlete’s first enrolled term. If adopted, the proposal would allow for continued collection of data about the academic profile of incoming student-athletes.
• Sponsored a proposal from the Atlantic Coast Conference for the 2008-09 legislative cycle requiring men’s basketball student-athletes with eligibility remaining to decide within 10 days of the Division I Men’s Basketball Championship whether they will declare for the NBA draft.
• Heard a presentation on several proposals already in the 2008-09 cycle, including one adjusting the number of baseball games. Board members said they would not support any change until the legislative package adopted in 2007 designed to improve the academic performance of baseball student-athletes has been in place for three years.
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