6:34 PM EDT, June 11, 2013
Have you heard the one about the basketball player who could shoot and dribble but could not pass? Fortunately, he doesn't play for UConn anymore.
The University of Connecticut's men's basketball players have gotten their grades up and thus are eligible for next year's NCAA tournament. The men's program had an Academic Progress Rate of 947 for the 2011-12 academic year, according to data released by the NCAA Tuesday. With a 978 in 2010-11, UConn has a two-year average comfortably above the NCAA benchmark of 930, which means they have a shot at March Madness in 2014.
Actually, current players were paying for the poor study habits of the teams from 2008-10, whose 844 and 826 APR scores (which measure staying in school and academically eligible) cost the program a couple of scholarships and a trip to this year's tournament. This was an embarrassment to the state and a disservice to the players, most of whom will not play professionally and do need an education.
But under President Susan Herbst, who took over in 2011, athletes are finding their way to the library and study halls, and coaches are making sure they do. Her goal is high academic and athletic standards; that should be everyone's goal.
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