USA Today Article: Education Secretary and Hoops

Education Secretary Duncan: Ban NCAA teams with low grad rates

You want schools with less than 40% graduation rate be banned from NCAA post-season play. Very wimpy, Respected Mr. Secretary. What will that really do, for the athlete, if that is who you are worried about?

Why not 80, 90, or, can we get bold and say even a 100% rate? While you are at it, how about a decent quality of education, so that these athletes can get a decent job, when they graduate in a good economy. I have been in university academia long enough to know that, if you pass that rule, there will be a 40% graduation rate overnight in all NCAA schools- sort of the Lake Woebegone effect- where all children are above average. Or being in Washington, would you prefer the “smoke and mirror” analogy?

I looked at some graduation rate numbers- only your neighbor Maryland with an 8% (USA Today is my source for this and other numbers I provide) is well below your expectation; next is CA with 20%; others AR-Pine Bluff (29%), Baylor (36%), Clemson (37%), GA Tech (38%), KY (31%), Louisville (38%), Missouri (36%), Tennessee (30%), and Washington (29%) are close. So, a bump in graduation rate to 40% would be “statistically” insignificant.

Your turn.

By the way, that 40%, where did it come from? baseball – Ted Williams batting average?

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