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NCAA Championship Pits Schools with High Graduation Rates

If Education Secretary Arne Duncan was looking for an "I told you so" moment to go along with his crusade to get the NCAA to bring up its...


If Education Secretary Arne Duncan was looking for an "I told you so" moment to go along with his crusade to get the NCAA to bring up its graduation rate for student-athletes, he hit pay dirt with tonight's match up of Duke and Butler for the college basketball crown. The two teams boast two of the highest four-year graduation rates in the entire tournament-measuring 92 and 90 percent, respectively.

It's been known for years that Duke Coach Mike Krzyzewski favors players that will stay in school long enough for him to win with them. In fact, he's been criticized for taking the best high school talent into the country and transforming it in NBA journeymen and flat-out duds. Still, the bulk of those kids leave with a degree from a highly regarded institution.

Another coach who specializes in actually fostering student-athletes, Georgetown basketball coach John Thompson III, went on CNN this weekend to discuss the graduation rate issue on State of the Union with Candy Crowley. He assented that there was definitely a problem with coaches and institutions not caring for the academic well-being of their athletes. He does not, however, think that Duncan's idea of keeping schools with low graduation rates out of the tournament.

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Correction: This post previously stated that Duke and Butler boast the highest four-year graduation rates in the entire tournament. In fact, they had the highest of the teams that reached the Sweet 16.










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