UK basketball improves grades in spring semester

UK Athletics touted improvement in the team grade-point average for men’s basketball in the spring semester, according to a news release Tuesday afternoon.

UK did not reveal what the team grade-point average was in men’s basketball for the spring semester in its news release.

But at John Calipari’s website, coachcal.com, it was reported as 2.18. That marked an improvement from the 2.025 attained in the fall semester. That fall GPA was the lowest by any team sponsored by UK.

The UK released called the improvement in men’s basketball “a step in the right direction considering five underclassmen declared for the 2010 NBA Draft.”

On his webpage, Calipari said, “One of the issues we face in basketball is that with such a relatively small number of athletes, a bad semester from one or two kids can bring down the GPA significantly. A GPA just under 2.2 is not what we hoped for. But for the most part, every player improved from the fall semester and most finished strong.

“With all that was swirling for this team and all the scrutiny and pressure, our guys buckled down and did what they had to move our GPA in the right direction. But our improvement does show we are headed in the right direction and that our guys understand their priorities need to be in the classroom before they can turn their attention to the basketball court.”

On a subsequent tweet, Calipari said, “A GPA just under 2.2 is not what we hoped for. But for the most part, every player improved from the fall semester and most finished strong.”

UK did identify grade-point averages for some of its other teams. Overall, UK athletes had a cummulative grade-point average of 3.04 in the spring semester. That GPA met Director of Athletics Mitch Barnhart’s goal of a 3.0 overall GPA in a semester.

The highest team GPAs in the spring semester were achieved by women’s cross country (3.49), softball (3.48) and women’s soccer (3.42). Thirteen of UK’s 22 teams averaged a 3.0 or better, according to the release.