Duncan: Ban low-grad teams from NCAA

March 17, 2010 at 9:04 PM
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WASHINGTON, March 17 (UPI) -- College basketball teams with low graduation rates should be banned from the NCAA Tournament, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said Wednesday.

In a conference call with reporters, Duncan repeated a call he first made in January, when he said the National Collegiate Athletic Association should ban teams from post-season play that fail to graduate at least 40 percent of their players, The New York Times reported.

"If a university can't have two out of five of their student-athletes graduate, I don't know why they're rewarded with post-season play," Duncan said, urging the NCAA and universities with top basketball programs to do more to graduate basketball players.

The Times reported that statistics compiled by the Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport at the University of Central Florida indicate 12 teams in this year's NCAA men's tournament -- including top seed Kentucky -- would be barred from competing under Duncan's criteria.

The institute said six colleges (Brigham Young, Marquette, Notre Dame, Utah State, Wake Forest and Wofford) boasted a 100 percent graduation rate.

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