Grad Rates for UM/NCAA Student Athletes

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New numbers are out for graduation rates for NCAA D1 student athletes. Many schools are criticized for allowing students to focus more on sports and extra-curricular activities like Texas Holdem poker than on their education. The current study released the finding for students that entered college in 2003 and how they stacked compared to Federal Graduation rates.

Michigan either met or exceeded the FGR in every sport with the exception of two minor sports. Take a look at some of the stats below:

Sport                  Graduation Success Rate   Federal Rate

Football             72%                                   65%
Baseball            82%                                   80%
Basketball         36%                                   29%
Golf                   89%                                   89%
Wrestling           55%                                   50%
W. Basketball    53%                                   53%

Michigan sports that were at 100% graduation rate were Men's Tennis, Women's Field Hockey, Women's Golf, Softball, and Women's Tennis. This goes to show that most student athletes at Michigan do more than play sports, party, and play poker.

How does Michigan rank in comparison to other Big Ten programs in graduation rates. In both baseball in football, they rank fifth in conference over other big ten schools. The one real black eye in regards to sports on this list is really Men's Basketball. While the graduation rate is higher than the Federal rate, it is still dead last in conference and among the lowest in the entire nation in the sport.

Keep in mind as well when looking at graduation rates for basketball that it is very common for any program to lose players to the NBA, transfers, etc. Players will many times go to schools to play just a couple of years and then try their hand at the NBA or other pro leagues. Juwan Howard, Chris Webber, Jalen Rose, and others are all examples from Michigan alone.

The NCAA also released that overall, the overall graduation rate from 2003 was 79%. This was the highest ever in Division I history and has risen a total of 12 points since tracking was established in 1984. According to NCAA President Mark Emmet “Given the large number of students we are measuring each year, any increase in graduation rates is remarkable, so this improvement is particularly noteworthy. These are not just numbers. These figures represent additional young people who are succeeding in the classroom and reaching their goals of graduation.”

So the next time someone tries to tell you that Michigan student athletes are a bunch of "dumb jocks" who party, play poker freerolls, and chase women, point them to this current study. Michigan is at or above the federal standard for graduation in all sports and among the tops in the Big Ten.