The NCAA will take its Academic Progress Rates to a new level Thursday when it announces how athletes have performed in the classroom while playing for individual coaches.
The NCAA will provide academic numbers for coaches in baseball, football, men's and women's basketball and women's indoor and outdoor track and field.
During a teleconference on Tuesday, the NCAA said that the release of APR numbers tied to individual coaches did not mean that penalties assessed to programs that underperform academically might follow a coach to his or her next job.
It was too early in the process to say if such penalties might be instituted in the future. The NCAA began compiling APR numbers in the 2003-04 academic year.
When asked what impact the APR numbers tied to individual coaches might have, NCAA Vice President Kevin Lennon said, "I'd hope, first and foremost, it would be a source of bragging rights for coaches who do well."
Lennon said a "vast majority" of coaches had good APR numbers.
The NCAA also hopes the individual coaches' APR numbers can be a tool prospects use in deciding what college to attend. "That's the broadest hope we have," Lennon said.
Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari has made no secret that preparing players for the NBA as quickly as possible is the foundation of his recruiting effort. Several prospects have talked about the almost exclusive appeal such a recruiting pitch has.
When asked how realistic it was to think prospects might look at APR numbers as a key factor in choosing a school, Lennon noted that a "vast majority" of prospects should not expect to have a professional career in athletics.
He said that the APR program is directed at prospects who "select this school because it's a good fit ... academically and you'll be playing for a coach who supports your (academic) values."