OXFORD, Miss. – Four Ole Miss teams have been recognized among the elite academic programs in the country in their sport with the NCAA’s announcement of the public recognition awards on Wednesday. The Ole Miss women’s cross country, women’s golf, women’s volleyball and women’s tennis teams received the prestigious honor for their latest Academic Progress Rates (APR).
The teams that are recognized posted multi-year APRs in the top 10 percent of all squads in each sport.
Among Southeastern Conference institutions, Ole Miss’ total of four teams is tied for fourth in the number of its programs to win the award this year.
“It is an honor to be recognized for being in the top 10 percent of any area or discipline,” said senior associate athletics director Derek Cowherd. “Having four of our women’s teams recognized for academic performance is proof that there are some special student-athletes and a dedicated supportive community here at the University of Mississippi.”
Each year the NCAA honors selected Division I sports teams by publicly recognizing their latest multi-year APR. This announcement is part of the overall Division I academic reform effort and is intended to highlight teams who demonstrate a commitment to academic progress and retention of student-athletes by achieving the top APRs within their respective sports.
Michele Drinkard’s women’s golf team makes the list for the fifth straight year. This year, Ole Miss is among 84 Division I women’s golf teams and five SEC squads to earn the distinction. The Rebel golfers earned their fifth straight NCAA berth this year and boasted seven players on the honor roll including Taylor Medalist Kathryn Fowler.
Women’s tennis makes the list for the second time and is one of 96 Division I women’s tennis teams and three schools from the SEC to earn this recognition. The Rebel netters led all Ole Miss teams with a 3.64 GPA this spring and had eight of nine players on the honor roll, including All-SEC honoree Caroline Rohde-Moe.
Volleyball also earned the award for the second time. The Rebels are one of 57 Division I programs and only two SEC teams to earn the recognition. Volleyball had five make the honor roll this spring, including recent graduate Amanda Philpot.
Women’s cross country received this recognition for the first time. The Rebel runners are one of 84 Division I women’s cross country teams and four from the SEC to make the list. The Rebels were led by Kathie Breathitt, who wrapped up her career by becoming the first Rebel female runner to compete in the NCAA Cross Country Championships.
The APR provides a real-time look at a team's academic success each semester by tracking the academic progress of each student-athlete on scholarship. The APR accounts for eligibility, retention and graduation and provides a measure of each team's academic performance.
Full APR scores for all teams, including penalties for low-performing teams, will be released June 11.
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