Texas Tech Defends Student Athletes After CNN Study

A recent CNN article claims some college athletes can not read better than a fifth grade level.

By: Meredith Hillgartner

A recent study from CNN has colleges across the country defending their student athletes after the study claimed many players read at a 5th grade level.

CNN requested test scores through open records requests, and three colleges in Texas answered.

Texas Tech was one of them.

The study shows Tech athletes scored lower on the SAT and ACT than non-athletes applying for admission.

It was the same story at neighboring schools Oklahoma University, the University of Texas and Texas A&M, but Tech’s NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative Brian Shannon said that information is misleading.

“The data that CNN looked at was fairly narrow in that it picked pieces of standardized test,” Shannon said. “That just gives part of the picture.”

He said the university looks at several factors from GPA to course load when coaches are recruiting.

“They are not only looking at the prospective athletes for their athletic talent but they also have to take a look at their academic potential,” Shannon said.

From the get go Shannon said academic advisers look at a student athletes background to diagnose any learning disabilities or additional tutoring programs that might be needed.

Shannon said some students even hit the books before they hit the field.

“Some take six to 12 credits in the summer and have a chance to adapt to college life, learn about study skills and get their feet wet,” Shannon said. “That’s been very successful.”

The hard work does not end once a student has gotten accepted.

The NCAA requires athletes to not just pass but progress academically in order to stay eligible for athletics.

Shannon said it is one of the universities top priorities to give student athletes the best opportunities possible.

“Certainly many times the value added of being a student at Texas Tech is something where someone can over come perhaps a challenging high school background,” Shannon said. 

You can read the full CNN article here: 

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