The APR scores are out, and UConn men’s basketball is out of the wilderness for now.
The program’s 947 for the 2011-12 academic year was a bit less than I was anticipating, but good enough for them to be eligible for postseason play next season. The transfers of Alex Oriakhi, Roscoe Smith and Michael Bradley in the spring of 2012 evidently cost them some retention points. This is another flaw in the system, BTW – players transfer because the team will be ineligible, and by doing so could contribute to future APR problems.
* Reminder, Andre Drummond was not a scholarship player, so there was no APR consequences to his one-and-done.
… But this is all behind UConn now.
* UConn folks remind us that two- and four-year rolling averages cannot be calculated by simply adding and dividing by four. You need “numerators” and “denominators” from each year. It’s a bit complicated for me, but UConn’s current four-year average is 896.55. Their two-year average is 964. They fall short of the needed 900 for a four-year average, but over the next two years, as part of the phase-in process of new standards, a program is eligible with 930-plus for a two-year average.
*By 2015-16, UConn will have to have a four-year rolling average of 930 or better. To do that, its players will simply need to keep performing the way they have the last two years. They need a mid-900s score next year to replace that 826 from 2008-2009, and another such score the following year to replace that 844 from 2009-10. Then they will be on solid APR ground going forward.
* And “going forward” now is the key phrase for this program. The NCAA sanctions are cleared, the academic ineligibility has been cleared, they have stability, if not contentment, in terms of conference realignment - they know who they’ll be playing and where, and recruits do not seem to care about conference affiliation. The new coach, Kevin Ollie, is firmly established. The Huskies are building strong non-conference schedules for the coming years.
So the clouds have cleared. Duplicating what UConn has done the last 20 years would be a lot to ask, for certain, but the future is not something that should be feared. The UConn brand has come through these tough times strong and intact.