UAPB graduation rate increases

Student-athletes who entered Arkansas-Pine Bluff from 2002-05 had a graduation success rate of 59 percent, according to statistics released by the NCAA on Thursday.

The GSR is 1 percent better than the cohort years of 2003 and 2004 and is a 6 percent increase from 2001. The rate was developed as an improved measurement took for tracking student-athletes’ academic progress toward graduation, according to a press release.

The GSR different from the Academic Progress Rate, which is a term-by-term measure of eligibility and retention for Division I athletes.

In comparison, student-athletes who entered Arkansas between 2002-05 had a GSR of 72 percent, marking the fourth-consecutive rate of more than 70 percent by Razorback athletes.

At UAPB, the softball team recorded the school’s highest GSR for the 2005 cohort year at 85 percent, followed by 80 percent for tennis, 75 for golf and women’s soccer and 71 for volleyball. Men’s cross country and track, counted as one program, had the lowest rate at 33 percent.

Rates among major sports at UAPB included 42 for football, 43 for men’s basketball, 58 for women’s basketball and 67 for baseball. The men’s basketball team is banned from the 2012-13 postseason for a low Academic Progress Rate, but the school is contesting the ban.

The federal graduation rates, which are based on scholarship-student athletes who enrolled full-time in 2005, are 47 percent for UAPB and 53 percent for Arkansas.