The University of Minnesota soccer team has been recognized by the NCAA for its multi-year Academic Progress Report (APR) score, and has been honored with Academic Performance Program (APP) Public Recognition.
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 that demonstrate a commitment to academic progress and retention of student-athletes by achieving the top APRs within their respective sports. Specifically, these teams posted multi-year 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.
This past year, Golden Gopher soccer received a perfect APR score of 1000, the best at the University of Minnesota. "It is an honor to receive this recognition," head coach Mikki Denney Wright said.
"Our goal at Minnesota soccer is to maintain excellence both on the field and off. We're very proud of our student-athletes, and their achievement in the classroom as well as on the soccer field. Our goal is for every player that comes through our program to have a positive and meaningful athletic experience, but to also graduate with their degree and go on and rule the world. We're proud that our players leave with a diploma, and leave ready to become leaders."
Academic success has been a staple of the Gopher's program since Denney Wright took over in 2004. In 2008, Gopher soccer had a record 12 players named to Academic All-Big Ten team, a number bettered this past fall when they placed 13 on the 2009 Academic All-Big Ten squad.
Last fall, the Gophers' 3.37 GPA was second best in the Big Ten, and for the fifth time in Denney Wright's six seasons Minnesota soccer was awarded the NSCAA College Team Academic Award. Also this past season Kylie Kallman was named a First Team Academic All-District Performer by ESPN the Magazine and CoSIDA. Kallman was a second team honoree in 2008, and is one of five Academic All-District performers in the Denney Wright era.
"The women who have graduated from this program have shown a dedication to their school work, and that is something that has been passed along to the rest of us as well," Kallman said. "This is definitely an honor, and an accolade that we hope to earn again in the future by continuing to work hard every day."
Minnesota is one of just 32 soccer programs from across the country to be honored, and the only program at Minnesota. They are joined by Indiana as the only two soccer programs from the Big Ten.
The NCAA has yet to announce a date for releasing full APR scores for all Division I sports teams, however it is expected that those figure will be announced later this spring.