Special to the NNPA from The Florida Courier

TALLAHASSEE – Florida A&M University has received notice from the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) that the football and men’s basketball teams will not be permitted to participate in 2014-15 postseason tournaments after falling below academic standards.

Appeals of the postseason ban were denied, Director of Athletics Kellen Winslow, Sr. announced Wednesday.

Taking responsibility
“We take responsibility for our failure to meet academic performance standards (APR) set by the NCAA,” said Director of Athletics Kellen Winslow, Sr.  “I am confident that the processes and procedures that we have put in place, along with the adoption of best practices, will address this issue. We look forward to overcoming this challenge and returning to post season competition as quickly as possible.”

FAMU’s sanctions are a result of the multiyear APR calculations – a four-year measurement covering the academic years 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13.

The men’s basketball’s multiyear APR score was 900 and football’s score was 885, both falling short of the 910 benchmark set forth by the NCAA for limited resource institutions. (A perfect APR score would be 1,000.)

No MEAC championships
Although neither team will be eligible for Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) regular season championships in 2014-15, games played against conference opponents will count in the standings.

Rattler football and basketball players will be eligible for all individual conference honors during the season.

“FAMU is committed to the success of our student-athletes both on and off the playing field,” said FAMU President Elmira Mangum, Ph.D. “Their academic success is our first priority and we take the regulations of the NCAA very seriously because they are designed to be applied consistently across all programs, at all member institutions, and represent best practice.”

FAMU’s APR improvement plan includes a partnership between its Department of Athletics and the Office of University Retention to enhance academic support to all athletes. The initiative includes monitored study hall and tutorial sessions; resources to enhance study and time management skills; and required coaching staff attendance in Academic Eligibility Rules Education sessions, to name a few.

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