Report: UGA athletes among the least illiterate

Quarterback Aaron Murray, considered one of UGA's smartest players, demonstrates elite writing skills. (AJC file photo)

UGA graduate and former quarterback Aaron Murray demonstrates elite writing skills. Murray is headed to the NFL draft in 2014. (AJC file photo)

The football season may have been a letdown, but UGA athletes are still winners.

A report by CNN indicates Georgia athletes are among the least illiterate.

In the story titled “Some college athletes play like adults, read like 5th-graders,” the Atlanta-based news network says 7 to 15 percent of players admitted to some of the best universities in the nation can’t read at the college level.

CNN asked for SAT and ACT scores from 37 universities; only 21 responded, including the University of Georgia.

At UGA, 7.5% of athletes during a 6-year period (2007-12) scored less than 400 on the reading portion of the SAT or 16 on the ACT reading test, the level considered “college literate.”

Twenty-two of the 7.5% were on the football team. One was on the men’s basketball team and one was on the women’s basketball team. Information for athletes on other teams (baseball, for example) were not included by UGA.

UGA provided combined SAT scores for reading and math portions of the test. The writing portion of the test was usually excluded from the combined score.

The combined average SAT score for athletes at UGA was 941, says CNN. Athletes scored an average of 18.75 on the ACT reading test.

The combined average SAT score for students admitted to UGA was 1,243 on the SAT, said CNN, but that too seems to just include reading and math scores, not writing scores. UGA freshmen averaged a 28 on the ACT.

UGA professor Billy Hawkins, author of “The New Plantation,” which Amazon says “examines the controversial relationship between black athletes and predominantly white NCAA Division I Institutions,” says when colleges admit students that can’t read their textbooks, it’s “another form of cheating.”

“A lot of them are majoring in eligibility,” Hawkins told CNN. “It’s too much for students reading below a college level. It’s basically a farce,” he said. “Students I mentor, many of them are doing well academically, but again it’s under this whole umbrella of maintaining eligibility and I think image construction.”

Many other schools we like to rank UGA against did not provide data.

Alabama, Florida and Florida State said it does not track the college admission test scores of athletes.

Auburn said it would send the information after football season.

Clemson, which beat UGA on the field, didn’t do as well on standardized tests, with 15% of athletes not meeting the “college literate” criteria.

The average SAT verbal score for incoming freshmen in 2012 was 607. Football players scored an average of 455, basketball players 477.

Clemson said some athletes “did not try very hard” on the SAT when they took it because they had already taken the ACT, but the university did not provide ACT scores for most players.

More news for the literate:

242 comments Add your comment

Bobbyjo

January 8th, 2014
11:48 am

@Contractor, GSR rates released by the NCAA in October (as posted on Saturday Down South):

1. Georgia: 82
1. Vanderbilt: 82
3. Florida: 77
4. LSU: 74
4. Missouri: 74
4. Texas A&M: 74
7. Alabama: 73
8. Auburn: 70
9. South Carolina: 65
10. Tennessee: 65
11. Kentucky: 62
12. Mississippi State: 59
13. Ole Miss: 55
14. Arkansas: 54

Contractor

January 8th, 2014
11:49 am

Moist Dawg,

Dude, do you ever speak with a lick of intelligence? It’s simple published statistics. I will bet you $1000 you get online and search for SEC football graduation rates and you’ll find those numbers on multiple reports. Good lord man, you are just not worth the time anymore because I bet you argue 1+1=2. Here in case you don’t know how Google works…

http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/ncaaf/2012/10/25/ncaa-graduation-rates-notre-dame-sec-college-football/1656329/

http://stanford.scout.com/2/1273612.html

http://www.sportingnews.com/ncaa-football/story/2012-10-25/graduation-rates-for-top-25-football-teams

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
11:51 am

B-jo,

I think that is 2003-2009. Not sure, though…

Contractor

January 8th, 2014
11:51 am

DawgNole,

Look, I know you’re upset about me drilling you yesterday and making you look like a fool, and I admit to mistyping. In the end, you knew exactly what I was trying to say and no one is 100% perfect. I already knew my mishap after it posted and figured a stickler like you would look for anything to try and save face for looking like you did yesterday.

GetontheGusBus

January 8th, 2014
11:52 am

Hey Dryed up ole hagg(Moist Dawg) If Richt runs such a clean program why do they bring recruits(Crowell) that have to be kicked out for behavior. You must not remember the 80’s…. Jan Kemp i think.

mudcatjoe

January 8th, 2014
11:53 am

Compare UGA to Georgia Tech! Afraid to show that statistic?

Contractor

January 8th, 2014
11:54 am

BobbyJo,

I guess that reading aspect they speak of in the article translates well.

“Here’s how the SEC stacks up with respect to football from 2003-06″. This is where your statistcs come from. I said based on 2012 results, not from freshmen entering school from 2003-2006. “These latest figures are a four-year average for freshmen who entered school between fall 2003 and fall 2006.”

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
11:54 am

GusBus,

Maybe the article should have been on the “least criminal” programs. What do you think?

Contractor

January 8th, 2014
12:00 pm

And MoistDawg, I do not believe Alabama is lilly white. Look at what happened with the assistant coach and Clinton-Dix, Gene Jelks back in the 90’s. There is a lot of dirty business that we have no clue about, but I don’t think any of our head coaches are at that forefront and give the go ahead with any demands. That’s where you and I are different, because I can accept reality, but you think your school is above Holy. In the end, Auburn is still the most penalized school in NCAA history.

joe

January 8th, 2014
12:12 pm

Stupid is as stupid does-BamaGump

HypoRICHT

January 8th, 2014
12:21 pm

PR — Yea, I am LITERATE. Having the distinction of being the LEAST ILLITERATE isn’t exactly a good thing. You still have illiterate players, which is embarrassing given we’re talking about COLLEGE players.

Dawg-Gawn

January 8th, 2014
12:31 pm

“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye. ~ Matthew 7:3-5

Character + Role + Grown Man = The Georgia Way

“BELIEVE” in the G

irishmafia116

January 8th, 2014
12:31 pm

Why is this a surprise? Studies have shown repeatedly that those “diversity” students rarely meet the standards of other students, fail to graduate within six years, despite the breaks given to them by professors, free tutoring,and all the free money they get to go to school. Yet we keep throwing more taxpayer money trying to make a weed a rose

irishmafia116

January 8th, 2014
12:34 pm

maybe that help’s explain why UGA continues to be among the nations leaders in penalties every year

Extremely sad

January 8th, 2014
12:39 pm

It is extremely sad but true. Alabama is possibly the worst! Most kids who receive less than a 3.0 and bomb the SAT go to Bama. They take more pride in the fact that the football team is ranked so high. I don’t think this should be a shock to anyone.The problem being that parents refuse to allow their kids to be held back and they move so much. Their parents are to blame and the coaches who get their grades changed. The US is becoming illiterate with all the illegals and sports players. The US clearly values athletes and celebrities and we are a stupid country overall. Look at our politicians….not the brightest!

DawgNole

January 8th, 2014
12:41 pm

Contractor
January 8th, 2014
11:51 am
DawgNole,
Look, I know you’re upset about me drilling you yesterday and making you look like a fool, and I admit to mistyping. In the end, you knew exactly what I was trying to say and no one is 100% perfect. I already knew my mishap after it posted and figured a stickler like you would look for anything to try and save face for looking like you did yesterday.
_____________________

Oh yeah, you “already knew” and just wanted to see if anyone else noticed. Classic loser.

And you might want to recheck that other blog to see who really got drilled. You looked like as big a fool on that one as you do today.

“I already knew.” LOL!

Illiterate jerk.

Homophone

January 8th, 2014
12:47 pm

Good afternoon MoistDawg. Please consider my name an introduction. I felt a blog on this topic would be a good platform for a formal introduction. I am words that have the same sound but different meanings. You seem to be confused by me, and I understand I can sometimes be a bit complicated. Let me provide you an example: There is a place, their is a plural possessive, and they’re is a contraction for they are. I have hidden a few more below to help you work on your understanding of me.

When your team gets a win, most everyone knows it is not due to the few illiterate players playing under the coaches nose. To be sure, sometimes one or two players can be real impact players too, but it is a team sport.

Hopefully this helps your understanding so that next time you write something you get me right.

Class of '98

January 8th, 2014
12:51 pm

This study is misleading. Many of these athletes merely need to score high enough on standardized tests to be ACCEPTED into the university. Most of them have athletic scholarships waiting for them, so it’s not necessary to take the SAT or ACT multiple times, like most other applicants do.

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
12:56 pm

If you’re right, then “homophobe” and “homophone” are almost homophonic, right?

Bernie31

January 8th, 2014
12:58 pm

Time for these Athletes to get a Piece of the Financial PIE from their employers, The Universities and Colleges, I am speaking of.

George Burdell

January 8th, 2014
12:59 pm

‘Least illiterate’ means ‘most literate’ which is a good thing. The headline should have been written better so the meaning would have been easier to understand. The article was poorly written and never really made any worthwhile points. The article reads like it was written by someone in elementary school. AJC needs to do better.

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
1:00 pm

George,

You’re missing it, too. I am so discouraged.

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
1:01 pm

Does “least criminal” mean “law-abiding”?

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
1:04 pm

No, it doesn’t. In this story, “least criminal” means your criminal element is not as bad as other “criminal elements”.

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
1:08 pm

Illiteracy has been, for this article, defined as a trait of all schools. UGA has a lesser level of illiteracy than others. That’s all it is saying.

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
1:11 pm

My God, people.

Old Dawg

January 8th, 2014
1:17 pm

The headline writer is illiterate: It should be “least literate.”

That being said, I agree with several other folks that this generation is, without question, the poorest educated, least ethical and most unable to critically analyze anything other than whether or not a smart phone upgrade sucks.

At the same time, the vast majority, even those from impoverished backgrounds, have an unwarranted sense of entitlement, insane inability to work with others and expect the world to offer them their job back after they leave for a few months/years of kum-ba-ya and life experience/travel.

If they want to be latter day ex-pats like Hemingway/Fitzgerald et al, that’s fine. But don’t expect the rest of the world to welcome them with open arms when they any work related experience.

I’m not a grumpy old man – far from it. I’m just sick and tired of the entitlement generation!

George Mathis

January 8th, 2014
1:18 pm

I wrote “least illiterate” because it is less literate than simply saying “most literate” and this is a humor blog.

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
1:19 pm

I give up…

hci

January 8th, 2014
1:23 pm

1) No new information

2) This issue was discussed in the 80’s and 90’s

3) An earlier blogger had it right. The discussion of changing to “normal / standard” entrance requirements for athletes fell to the wayside because it would supposedly have a more detrimental effect on the “black” athletes. The “whitey bigotted” university administrators were attempting to deny black athletes a college education. Don’t believe it, ask Al Sharpton or Jesse Jackson.

4) Listen to the TV interviews of the majority of the student athletes. Their use and pronunciation of the English language should be embarrassing for the athlete, the coaches, and the university.

5) Most major college coaches and athletic directors could care less if an athlete can read or write, as long as they can be taught verbally, or through demonstration, and are athletic enough to win sporting events.

6) IT WILL NOT change until legislation is enacted by state or federal legislators directed such.

7) It is a shameful situation perpetrated by our sports’ crazed society.

Hidden agenda

January 8th, 2014
1:29 pm

Not the “most literate,” but the “least illiterate.” What more do you need to say?

Hidden agenda

January 8th, 2014
1:29 pm

Glad we got that pesky “radioactive snow falling in the midwest” story out of here or some folks might have shown an interest. LOL.

Stupid is as stupid does

January 8th, 2014
1:30 pm

Follow the money

Contractor

January 8th, 2014
1:31 pm

DawgNole,

You were destroyed by logic yesterday. Simply calling me out by mistyping is not a leg up on your part. If that makes you feel like a hero, so be it. Just do yourself a favor and pick only four teams to root for next year. I’m guessing you’re a Yankees fan, Lakers fan, Patriots fan, and Penguins fan as well as a Georgia. Florida State, USC, Notre Dame, and Ohio State fan, right? Classic sidewalk fan that has never even attended a school he pulls for, yet thumps his chest on a blog like he’s ruler of the world. I will shame you on anything you want to discuss. You and MoistDawg make a great team, because neither of you are within ten steps of reality. Y’all must be drinking buddies or Warcraft buddies. Just understand one thing, statistics and facts don’t lie. Bring some to the table to next time you try to berate or belittle someone. I proved my school graduated football players better than both of your schools. What have you proven?

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
1:32 pm

Next post goes deeper into the abyss…

AJC is a Joke

January 8th, 2014
1:32 pm

So, scrutinize the literacy skills of atheletes but allow writers to omit grammar:

“…7 to 15 percent of players admitted to some of the best universities in the nation can’t read at the college level.”

Hi, author. What sport did you play in college?

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
1:33 pm

Darkness consumes us…

motocross survivor

January 8th, 2014
1:46 pm

“The New Plantation”? I guess he had to coat his story with “blacks as victims” to avoid being fried and slaughtered for stating the facts. Anybody who tries to deny that these black athletes who excel on the field are having rules bent into a pretzel to allow them to be “students” just as well deny air and sky. I came along when the Regents Test was required for college students in GA. Part of it was the student having to write a coherent essay in a class setting, within a specific period of time, on a subject that was given to them when they sat down…no sooner. Black students failed this part of the test at an incredible rate. I knew one guy who seemed to be a pretty good student otherwise, but he had to take required coursework on basic writing repeatedly just to give him a chance to pass the Regents writing portion. And he wasn’t even an athlete. Some of these athletes are complete embarrassments when they find themselves in front of a microphone for a post-game interview. They can’t even utter a coherent statement.

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
1:53 pm

Darker…and…darker…

TinLizzy

January 8th, 2014
1:55 pm

Moist Dawg

January 8th, 2014
11:21 am
this is no suprise. its also no suprise that auburn hasnt showed there scores. its also a suprise that bama didnt just report that all there players got perfect scores.
one more piece of evedince that richt is the coach k of college football! Auburn hasn’t SHOWED THERE……Are you retard or what? Richt the Coach K of football? Now i know you’re a retard. did you ever hear Jarvis Jones speak after a football game? there is no way that guy could even get into a community college on his own let alone UGA if it wasn’t for football ability! So don’t even go there with the St. Mark Richt act…..he has dumb as bricks on his team. Just like ALL college football teams.

@Contractor the reason it’s hard to get into UGA as a freshman now is not b/c the academic standards/requirments are high it’s a simple supply and demand issue. I’m good friends with a Gwinnett HS curriculum principal and she knows UGA freshman acceptance is on a quota system. They have to take a dictated number of students from each GA HS school cluster and X number of out of state students (need that OOS tuition $$$). that’s why so many transfer after freshman year. UGA doesn’t care who they take then….hell my friends son got expelled from GA Southern and UGA took him! Freshman acceptance to UGA is akin to winning a lottery.

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
2:03 pm

I agree, hell, if Rousseau gets credit for anything…it’s grown men in tights, riding bicycles on asphalt highways amidst semi-trucks going 65 mph…I’m just saying…–Gutrake

tgb

January 8th, 2014
2:06 pm

GetontheGusBus

January 8th, 2014
11:52 am
Hey Dryed up ole hagg(Moist Dawg) If Richt runs such a clean program why do they bring recruits(Crowell) that have to be kicked out for behavior.

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Kicked out recruits … The prime source for Auburn quarterbacks.

Contractor

January 8th, 2014
2:06 pm

TinLizzy,

Well I know the Hope Scholarship skyrocketed admission requirments as well. Georgia is a good school and there’s no denying that. It’s not Harvard or Yale type requirements, but yeah they bring folks in from across the country and have a little higher of a standard. I was stating that there is obvious preforential treatment when it came to athletes there, and everywhere for that matter. A typical 9th grader could score better than some of these graduating athletes. Some people just aren’t suited for college. Unfortunate those seats could go to someone that may actually accomplish something one day with an education, not make it on TMZ for a sex tape or on Nancy Grace for a murder or shooting. It’s just pathetic to the n-th degree.

No, really, come on GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
2:13 pm

I can’t help that the writer of this article decidedly negated everything about this article to feed feelings of negativity about the school for people who can’t read between the lines, but:
A 1243 SAT score is well above the national average. Contrary to what the author would like you to think, if the writing scores were submitted it would actually ADD to the SAT score, making it even higher.

So yes, you are right. The article’s title implies negativity. But the writer’s chip on his shoulder doesn’t stop there–he tries his damnedest to manipulate numbers, words, whatever he can to sway the reader into thinking that these statistics imply stupidity. And they just don’t. Re-read it and see for yourself.

Snagglepuss

January 8th, 2014
2:15 pm

PR:(10:33 am post)

You are trying to explain the English language to Bammy, Fla., Barn, FSU, etc. grads so just forget it!!!!

Bammy says they don’t even keep up with the athletes/dummies on their teams so you are being heard/read by those who…………….can actually read and write. They may as well be deaf, blind and no typing ability!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Save you breath/computer!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

GUTRAKE

January 8th, 2014
2:18 pm

come on,

Are you writing to me?

Sin and A Shame

January 8th, 2014
2:19 pm

Student-athletes…….roflamao…………

Contractor

January 8th, 2014
2:25 pm

Snagglepuss,

When was the last time Georgia had a finalist for the Rhodes Scholarship? Oh that’s right, never. Alabama had one in Greg McElroy, and Florida State’s Myron Rolle actually received it! Think again before you start spewing non-sense. And the statistics I’ve already displayed showed Georgia’s football program has bigger dummies than Alabama’s. Once again, don’t let statistics get your way. They can be deadly when properly used.

Snagglepuss

January 8th, 2014
2:28 pm

@ tgb(11:52 am post)

Excellent response!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Just because Crowell was guilty of “Stupidity” on occasions doesn’t mean he was illiterate!!!!!!!!!!!

TinLizzy

January 8th, 2014
2:30 pm

Contractor…. just wanted to point out that UGA admission standards are no better than most schools. We build so many new HS in this state every year (Gwinnett county in particular) with no additional universities to house these kids when they graduate. GGC in Gwinnett county has grown by leaps and bounds b/c of this. When you think about it GA really only has a few “high profile” colleges – UGA, Tech, Kennesaw and Emory. and let’s face it when hiring, people look at where you earned your degree….i know i do. I’ll take a UGA, Clemson, or Auburn (hell even Bama :D ) student over a West GA or Reinhardt college student. And it is a shame there are so many hard working deserving students that cannot get into “high profile” i.e. big football school b/c of the athletes they take.