Despite a 5-7 overall record, the Longhorns were eligible for a post-season bowl game after Texas’ win over Baylor in the season finale. Because of the 40 bowls in 2015, there weren’t enough teams in the FBS to finish with the minimum six wins required to play in one of them. Due to this, teams that finished below .500 were eligible for selection.
But the NCAA had an issue: How to determine how those teams get slotted. The answer: Rank schools based on Academic Progress Rate – essentially a score created based on athletes’ progression toward a degree while an undergraduate. UT didn’t pass the muster and finished low in the pecking order.
The Statesman columnist Ken Herman presents his take on Texas’ ills in the classroom forcing the team to fail to go to a postseason game. Some highlights of the column:
On the Longhorns APR:
“Based on those rates, and that Missouri opted not to go to a bowl, the winners were Nebraska (985) and Minnesota (975) and San Jose State (975). Texas was down the list at 958, embarrassing for a school that considers itself world class.”
On UT losing out to Nebraska:
“And actually, maybe losing out to Nebraska isn’t all that embarrassing. Though not an Ivy League school, Nebraska can boast exes such as Johnny Carson; former Prime Minister Karlis Ulmanis of Latvia; subway designer Bion Arnold, the “father of the third rail”; and Gerry Thomas, sometimes credited as the inventor of the TV dinner.”
On the fine institution of San Jose State:
“You’d think UT could match up academically with San Jose State, which plays Georgia State in the Cure Bowl in Orlando on Dec. 19. Again, though it might not be the best way to rate a university’s overall quality, let’s look at famous exes. San Jose’s seem to come in pairs: Both Smothers Brothers, Tom and Dick; two Doobie Brothers, Tom Johnston and Patrick Simmons; and Fleetwood Mac bandmates, Stevie Nicks and Lindsey Buckingham.”
To read Ken’s entire column, click here.
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