The 2009 Academic Progress Report was recently released. Not exactly featured on the front of the Sports page and great to see stereotypes still apply.
When Pete Fiutak of FOX Sports mentioned that when Miami rolled in ranked 7th, he was quick to write, "no, not the Ohio version".
Funny how some stereotypes will never die. Sad, actually.
The University of Miami ranked only behind Stanford, Air Force, Duke, Rutgers, Rice and Navy. State-funded Florida earned a respectable 20th while Free Shoes U proved they're no academic juggernaut, ranked T80th. Also 80th, Virginia Tech and New Mexico. Mississippi State and West Virginia ranked higher. G-O N-O-W-E-L-Z!
For those who don't know about the APR, every Division I sports team calculates its APR each academic year. The total is based on eligibility retention and graduation of each scholarship student-athlete. Miami 977 points was better than Notre Dame, Northwestern, Boston College, Vanderbilt and Wake Forest, all who fell between 10th and 20th.
The Canes scored a 977 in 2008, up from a 10th-ranked 966 in 2007 and for those who think this is a new trend, think again. From 1992-1997, UM was one of only eight schools to graduate at least 70% of its football student-athletes. The 2004 AFCA graduation rate was 84.2%; the nation's average was 58%.
As for the ignorant fans who will chime in saying these stats are pointless, it's all about Ws and Ls - check yourself. This is a university first and football program second. These players are here to get an education and play football; in that particular order. What Randy Shannon is instilling in this kids is not only bigger than the game, but it'll make the better players. You need to be a winner across the board, not just on the field.
By molding young men, this will create better overall players. Top-flight recruiting classes and development of players are the other obvious parts to the equation.