Members of the UNLV football team celebrate in this undated file photo. (File/FOX5)
LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -
The University of Nevada, Las Vegas football team will be banned from postseason play beginning this coming season due to falling short of academic requirements, the school's athletic department announced Thursday.
According to UNLV, the school was denied a final appeal with an NCAA subcommittee to allow the Rebels to play despite falling below the collegiate governing body's minimum requirement.
The NCAA has a scoring system in place called Academic Progress Rate, or APR.
Each sport at every university receives an average score over a four-year period based on the number of students that move up in grade level and eventually graduate.
Each school must score 930 out of a possible 1,000 points. UNLV scored 925.
As a part of the ban, UNLV will not be able to play in the 2014 Mountain West Championship game or a postseason bowl game. In addition, four hours of weekly practice time will be replaced with four additional hours of academic activities.
The team will also reduce the days of football-related activities from six to five a week.
"I am disappointed for the vast majority of our football players who understand the importance of academics and who embrace and meet their responsibilities," Director of Athletics Tina Kunzer-Murphy said. "In fact, 96 percent of the football players on our current roster have never cost UNLV an APR point - so clearly, the overwhelming majority of our student-athletes understand that their first priority must be academics."
"Improving our academic scores is something we always have and will continue to emphasize," head coach Bobby Hauck said. "We are going to continue to work at it and we will continue to work hard to graduate our players."
In response, UNLV has put an improvement plan in place which includes two additional positions to oversee academics, new computers and academic software and restructured study facilities. The university has also hired an outside firm that specializes in improving APR scores.
The team was looking to improve from its 7-5 mark in 2013 and their return to a bowl game 13 years after their previous postseason matchup.
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