ST. LOUIS - Three Saint Louis University athletic programs were honored by the NCAA today as part of the 2012 Academic Performance Program public recognition awards. The Billiken sports recognized are men's indoor track and field, men's outdoor track and field and women's tennis.

Each year the NCAA honors selected Division I sports teams by publicly recognizing their latest multiyear NCAA Division I Academic Progress Rate (APR). This announcement is part of the overall Division I academic reform effort and is intended to highlight teams that demonstrate a commitment to academic progress and retention of student-athletes by achieving the top APRs within their respective sports. Specifically, these teams posted multiyear APRs in the top 10 percent of all squads in each sport. 

"The primary goal in the department of athletics is to educate our student-athletes, and the recognition by the NCAA of our success demonstrates that we are achieving that goal," SLU director of athletics Chris May said. "We are proud of the three programs recognized, and credit goes not only to the student-athlete, but to their coaches, University administrators, faculty and advisors for their work in helping educate and retain our student-athletes."

It is the fifth year in a row that men's outdoor track and field has been recognized, and the fourth-straight year the indoor squad and women's tennis program have received the recognition. Since the APR public recognition awards were initiated in 2004-05, the Billikens have had a total of 30 programs recognized.

The Atlantic 10 Conference had 56 sports programs recognized, which was fourth in the country behind only the Ivy League, the Patriot League and the Big East Conference.

The APR provides a real-time look at a team's academic success each semester by tracking the academic progress of each student-athlete on scholarship. The APR accounts for eligibility, retention and graduation and provides a measure of each team's academic performance.