Graduation Success Rates released by the NCAA on Tuesday reveal that Arkansas-Pine Bluff student-athletes who enrolled between 2004 and 2007 collectively graduated at a higher rate than the Federal Graduation Rate for all students.

Graduation Success Rates released by the NCAA on Tuesday reveal that Arkansas-Pine Bluff student-athletes who enrolled between 2004 and 2007 collectively graduated at a higher rate than the Federal Graduation Rate for all students.


Overall, UAPB athletes within a six-year span posted a 62 percent GSR, higher than the FGR of 47 percent. GSRs, which are compiled by the NCAA, measure the progress of mid-year and other transfers who received athletic scholarships in addition to the 2007 freshmen. The FGRs, compiled by the U.S. Department of Education, measures the percentage of only full-time freshmen in 2007 who graduate within six years.


The data is welcome news for the university, which has had its share of Academic Progress Rate struggles in recent years. The GSRs are different from the Academic Progress Rates that are usually released in May or June of each year and measure each Division I sports team’s progress in retaining athletes in school and keeping them academically eligible.


The women’s soccer team, which won SWAC championships in 2009 and 2011, graduated 86 percent of its athletes within six years according to GSR data. That’s much higher than the federal rate of 67 percent for that sport.


Other GSRs for UAPB that exceeded the FGRs were found in baseball (67 to 58), football (59 to 45), women’s basketball (65 to 60), women’s cross country/track and field (64 to 41), softball (69 to 35), women’s tennis (67 to 50) and women’s volleyball (63 to 33). Men’s tennis matched its federal rate of 75 percent.


The men’s basketball (50 to 55) and men’s golf (33 to 50) teams fell below the federal rates. There are no known penalties for low GSR performance.


UAPB faced bans from national postseason tournaments in men’s basketball during the 2012-13 and 2013-14 seasons for low APR scores. The football team fell below APR standards according to the latest release and would be ineligible to compete in this season’s Football Championship Subdivision playoffs, but the SWAC does not send a team to that tournament.