The latest NCAA Academic Progress Rate report published Wednesday had a curious twist for the Arizona men's basketball team: The Wildcats put up a perfect 1,000 score in 2017-18 but fell three spots in average four-year rating to 960 overall.
Arizona's 960 score is the third-worst four-year average in the Pac-12, having dropped because UA's perfect score of 1,000 in 2013-14 dropped off and a 906 mark in 2014-15 remained. Stanford had the highest score at 997 while UCLA veered very close to the 930 penalty line with a four-year score of 933.
Arizona's three-point drop in the four-year average — despite swapping out identical 1,000 scores — might be explained by differences in "denominators" (or total factors counted, minus exceptions that sometimes erase numbers from the calculation).
Arizona's 1,000 score in 2017-18 meant no player that season was academically ineligible for a semester and all players who left early signed pro contracts. Deandre Ayton was the No. 1 pick in the NBA draft, while Rawle Alkins and Allonzo Trier signed two-way contracts.
The APR is calculated in a "batting average" formula, with each player counting for four possible "hits" each season: Two for each semester they are academically eligible and two for each semester they return. The total percentage is then multiplied by 1,000 to get the final score.
However, various exceptions can result in a higher rate, such as when players leave early but sign pro contracts and do not count against the formula.
Arizona's football team had a 962 score in 2017-18, when the program changed coaches, and has a 952 rate overall.
APRs for all Arizona sports, for both 2017-18 and the four-year average, are listed in the attached PDF file.
The four-year average, if it dips to 930 or below, can result in penalties. In the Pac-12, the rolling four-year averages are:
Oregon State 973
Washington State 970