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Article:InterMat.Blog: Four Points for May 9 (It's Academic, Right?)

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Fourpoints

http://www.intermatwrestle.com | http://intermat.wordpress.com

Been another busy day here at the home office in damp and rainy Manheim, Pa. Lancaster County has been beautiful all week long, but what a crappy day to end the week with. I was supposed to be down in Virginia for the ODU alumni golf outing, but because gas prices are the way they are, it would end up costing me over 200 bucks in gas just to go home (for Mother's Day) ... then additional funds for the golf, and the socializing and the lunch for mom, etc. The Fed decided to cash my check (I had to pay out the rear) with some other bills, so I'm slumming for a week.

I did however get something lined up this weekend to stay involved. I announced Franklin & Marshall's home wrestling duals this past season and concluded the season with an opportunity to announce the EIWA Wrestling Championships. I've already mentioned my affiliation with the Dutchland Rollers as an announcer named "Horace N. Buggy," but Saturday and Sunday add another unique opportunity -- announcing the NCAA Division III Women's Lacrosse regional here in Lancaster.

Total lacrosse games I have witnessed in person : 2
Total lacrosse games I will witness/announce this weekend : 3

In case you're wondering, F&M is the defending Division III National Champions and the regionals also feature the Washington & Lee Generals, Babson Beavers and Amherst Lord Jeffs. ... what the (%$#) is a Lord Jeff?

Gas : $3.65 (for no good reason)
Weather : Rainy and 53.
Currently listing to : Huey Lewis & The News - Finally Found a Home (Sports)

Alphabet Soup
I keep thinking of Diehl Toyota commercials when I head the term APR. But when talking college sports, we all know what the APR means. Yet, we really don't seem to fully understand the nuances of the Academic Progress Rate.

A day and a half after the NCAA released its APR figures, the National Wrestling Coaches Association announced the Top 30 All-Academic Wrestling Teams and Individual All-Academic selections. One team showed up on the NCAA's APR "slap of the wrist" list and the All-Academic Team. Cal State-Bakersfield had an APR of 906, putting it near the bottom of the 87 Division I Wrestling schools.  They were 13th among programs in terms of team GPA with a 3.06. CSUB had three individuals on the All-Academic Team, as did another APR violator, ODU with three individuals as well. UT-Chattanooga, which faces a post-season ban if they don't pull the APR up, had two All-Academic selections.
Csub

Here's the dilemma. The NWCA's GPA takes into account the 10 wrestlers who each competed at the NCAA qualifier for your respective conference, then you get two wildcards that must have wrestled in at least one event during the year (non-redshirt).

I'd love to find the graduation rates of non-athletes vs. traditional students and see the difference in how many "regular" students graduate in four or even five years compared to what the student-athlete on $1,000 bucks a semester gets.

Remember, equivalency sports are usually the last ones in line for the tutoring behind football and roundball. Yes, there is a tier-system within college sports, the have's and the have not's, and guess what, the have not's keep getting a bad wrap because of this system which doesn't adequately adjust for partial schollies fairly, nor COMMON SENSE.

VMI
VMI is one of the most demanding first-year experiences in the country and they're supposed to be in the same situation with a state school on a trimester system? Here's a note from the Roanoke Times, which unfortunately skews it to appear as if VMI is a bunch of ineligible derelicts. That's not the case ... according to the A.D. in Lexington, the Keydets got a 1,000 one year and still are below 925 on the rolling average. 

Dead horse, I'm beating on it.

Title IX, meet the politicians
Speaking of VMI, coach John "Rocky" Trudgeon forwarded me this link today from USA Today. I find it typical of big government to basically have a spin doctor explain your stance for you and simply speak in terms of attacks.

Granted, I'm biased in respect to my perception of what I think about Title IX, proportionality and the liberal media bias (and agenda-based editors) as it relates to the topic, but check out John McCain's "comments" compared to Hillary and Obama's.

McCain "gets it" on this issue, but in all, I hate politics. Oh, on a related note, the University of Arkansas-Little Rock dropped its men's tennis team today, citing "financial" issues, but mentions proportionality (QUOTA!) in the second graph. Way to contradict yourself UALR.

So a budget cut kills the men's team, yet the women's team stays ... please stop masking this, it' a Title IX issue and you know it.

NCAA Qualifier Information
Ncaawrestling
Apparently an issue with the NCAA's news website, ncaa.org, caused a delay in a much-anticipated story regarding the Division I Wrestling automatic qualifier scenario. I was planning on writing a companion story with some comments from Brad Traviolia, the Deputy Commissioner of the Big Ten Conference and the Chair of the NCAA Wrestling Committee.

A pair of college wrestling coaches who are on the wrestling committee were also interviewed in preparation for the pending NCAA News story, but I can't run mine without actually knowing what the NCAA story is going to say, but from what I've gotten from talking to those on the committee and my knowledge based on some data mongering, this format will actually be a good thing for the sport.

Yes, I realize this is a complete tease right now, but hey, I've gotta keep you reading right? Hopefully I can get this out of the weekend, depending on when the NCAA News story wants to be posted.

Penn State punts three from team
PennState
After one of the best overall seasons in recent memory, the school year will be ending somewhat sour as Penn State coach Troy Sunderland booted three wrestlers from the squad on Friday. In a late Friday afternoon release (nice timing, Pat), Penn State announced NCAA qualifiers Garrett Scott and Dave Rella along with redshirt freshman Jared Platt were dismissed from the team, but granted releases to transfer elsewhere, if they desired.

Details are, as you might expect, non-existent from a sports information release, but with all the APR talk recent days, it says something when you could get hit for some serious points with three transfers.

Will there be more to this story? I'm sure, but that's what the message boards are for.

 


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