Iowa Stands Tall Among BCS Teams Academically

Dec. 9, 2009

IOWA CITY, Iowa – The University of Iowa football team will be playing for a Top 10 finish when the Hawkeyes square off against Georgia Tech in the 2010 FedEx Orange Bowl on Jan. 5 in Miami. However, Kirk Ferentz’s squad will enter its second Bowl Championship Series event already among college football’s very best when it comes to another important measuring stick: Graduation.

According to data distributed by NCAA last month, the football program at the University of Iowa – with a Graduation Success Rate of 74 – ranks second only to Cincinnati among the ten teams that have been invited to participate in the five BCS events. The Bearcats’ GSR was 75; Cincinnati will play Florida in the 2010 Allstate Sugar Bowl. The Gators rank third among this peer group with a GSR of 69.

Alabama (67) and Texas Christian University (65) complete the top five. Alabama will play in the Citi BCS National Championship and TCU has been invited to participate in the 2010 Tostitos Fiesta Bowl.

Iowa ranks third among the seven bowl-bound Big Ten Conference teams behind Northwestern (92 percent, Outback Bowl) and Penn State (85 percent, Capital One Bowl.)

The NCAA developed the Graduation Success Rate to more accurately assess the academic success of student-athletes. Unlike the federal graduation rate calculation, the NCAA’s GSR holds institutions accountable for transfer students. Institutions are not penalized when student-athletes leave an institution in good academic standing. The NCAA’s GSR also accounts for students who enroll at an institution at mid-year, an adjustment that increases the total number of student-athletes tracked for academic success by more than 37 percent.<>

Team rank by NCAA Graduation Success Rate

  • 75 percent – Cincinnati (Allstate Sugar Bowl)
  • 74 percent – Iowa (FedEx Orange Bowl)
  • 69 percent – Florida (Allstate Sugar Bowl)
  • 67 percent – Alabama (Citi BCS National Championship)
  • 65 percent – Texas Christian University (Tostitos Fiesta Bowl)
  • 62 percent – Ohio State (Rose Bowl)
  • 58 percent – Boise State (Tostitos Fiesta Bowl)
  • 49 percent – Georgia Tech (FedEx Orange Bowl)
  • 49 percent – Oregon (Rose Bowl)
  • 49 percent – Texas (Citi BCS National Championship)