RICHMOND – Eastern Kentucky University’s men’s basketball and volleyball teams were two of 24 programs from across the Ohio Valley Conference to receive a coveted NCAA Division I Academic Progress Rate (APR) Public Recognition Award on Wednesday.
This specific award is given each year to teams that posted multiyear APRs in the top-10 percent of all squads in each sport. 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.
“Eastern’s men’s basketball and volleyball teams, and their coaches are to be congratulated for earning the prestigious NCAA Division I Academic Progress Rate Public Recognition Award,” Dr. Michael T. Benson, President, Eastern Kentucky University, said. “I am extremely proud of these student-athletes who have clearly demonstrated their excellence in the classroom. All of them are exceptional individuals who are proven leaders on and off the court.
“I particularly commend our coaches. They have recognized the importance that our student-athletes must be students first. As a university and intercollegiate athletics program committed to academic success, this NCAA recognition places a stamp of approval on EKU as we provide the academic environment that will lead to our students’ success and a college degree.”
Eastern is one of only 40 out of 349 men’s basketball teams from across the nation to earn the Public Recognition Award. Only two men’s basketball teams in the Commonwealth of Kentucky earned the award, EKU and the University of Louisville. Eastern joined Belmont University as the only two men’s basketball teams in the Ohio Valley Conference to be recognized.
Eastern Kentucky and Morehead State were the only two volleyball programs in the OVC to earn the award.
On the court, the Eastern Kentucky men’s basketball team won the program’s sixth OVC Tournament Championship and made its eighth NCAA Tournament appearance. Eastern nearly upset No. 2 seed Kansas in the Big Dance, leading the Jayhawks with 8:55 left in the game and trailing by only three with 3:39 to go.
The Colonel volleyball team advanced to the semifinals of the OVC Tournament and finished the season with 18 wins.
Multiyear APRs for all Division I sports teams, including the teams receiving public recognition, will be announced on Wednesday, May 14.