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Academic Based Revenue Distribution

For the first time, a portion of Division I revenue will be distributed to member schools based on the academic achievement of student-athletes. The new model will allow schools with higher graduation rates and academic success to qualify for more funds.

The change, approved by both the Division I Board of Directors and the NCAA Board of Governors, will begin with the 2019-20 academic year. The first distribution will occur in Spring 2020.

The Criteria

A school earns an academic unit by meeting any ONE of the three standards.

  1. Division I APR for the previous year is equal to or greater than 985. The average of single-year scores for all teams is used to determine eligibility for this standard.
  2. The Graduation Success Rate for the most recently available year is equal to or greater than 90 percent. The average of single-year rates for all teams is used.
  3. The difference between the student-athlete and student body percentages in the most recently published Federal Graduation Rate is equal to or greater than 13 percentage points.
About the Initiative

The initiative was made possible through the NCAA’s multimedia rights contract with CBS/Turner.

The Goal

The goal of the academic unit is to provide an incentive for academic success and improve academic outcomes of student-athletes.

Timeline for Academic Unit Revenue Distribution

The first distribution will be made in Spring 2020. Mock reports will be available beginning in Spring 2018 and will run up until the time of the actual distribution. The funds are “unrestricted” meaning institutions/conferences may use funds from their academic distribution in the manner they deem most appropriate. Conferences are free to distribute the funds in accordance with their existing distribution policies.