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South Carlolina, Missouri football lead the SEC in APR

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South Carolina and Missouri led all SEC football programs in academic progress rate (APR) during the 2012-2013 academic year, according to data released on Wednesday. What is APR, exactly? In addition to being a not-that-great way of measuring academic success, it's the NCAA's metric for determining whether or not schools are putting the "student" in student-athlete. (I feel like I need to take a shower after typing that.)

Should we ignore things defenses can't control when rating them?

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Dan Hanner builds on an e-mail I wrote him discussing whether rating systems should consider 3-point percentage defense or free-throw percentage defense when they rate teams. In my e-mail to Dan, I focused on a specific example - North Dakota State. If you're interested in the details, here's the relevant portion of that e-mail excerpted below: In 2013, NDSU allowed 26.2 free throws per effective (non-turnover) possession, and that number ticked up slightly to 28.7 per 100 in 2014. Yet the difference in "free throw defense" came from the FT% of its opponents, which moved from 69.6% to 75.3%. While in 2013 NDSU gave up about the number of points you would expect from the line given its defensive capabilities, in 2014 it gave up 1.7 more points per 100 possession thanks solely to FT shooting by its opposition, completely out of its control. The same story with 3s, though that requires a belief in Pomeroy's theory on the topic. You'd have expected the opposition to score 11.9 points per 100 effective possessions on 3s against NDSU in 2014, but they scored 13.2. That's another 1.4 points outside their control (rounding). Add it up, and that's a 3.1 point swing in 2014 based on luck, not talent. Take 3.1 points off their defensive rating, and you get to a fair defensive rating of 100.0 points per 100 possessions, which would rate 74th in Pomeroy. If you did the same exercise for 2013 and strip out the Bisons' good fortune, you'll get a fair defensive rating of 70th. Basically the same as their fair rating in 2014.

Lorenzo Nunez committing on Thursday

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South Carolina and N.C. State are thought to be the frontrunners here for the four-star quarterback out of Kennesaw (Ga.) Harrison. He's the No. 8 dual-threat quarterback and the 219th-best overall prospect in the 2015 class according to the 247Sports Composite Index.

VIDEO: L.B. Dantzler hits grand slam in A-Ball

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The Lansing Lugnuts defeated Dayton 9-6 on Thursday, and a grand slam former South Carolina corner infielder L.B. Dantzler supplied the game-winning runs with one powerful swing of the bat.

Baseball America projects Gamecocks for top eight national seed

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South Carolina has battled through injuries in 2014 but still finds itself well-positioned to push for a top eight national seed if it can win each of its final three regular season series. The Gamecocks go on the road this weekends to Athens to take on the Georgia Bulldogs, get the Missouri at home, and finish out the year at Vanderbilt.

Josh Cunningham commits to Bradley

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2014 Chicago Morgan Park forward Josh Cunningham announced he will attend Bradley.

— Jeff Rabjohns (@JeffRabjohns) April 29, 2014

Josh Cunningham sets Tuesday announcement

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The four-star forward of Chicago is expected to announce between South Carolina, Bradley, and St. John's.

George Rogers participating in Reddit Heisman panel AMA

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George Rogers will be one of five former Heisman Trophy winners participating in a Reddit AMA from a Habitat for Humanity build in Dallas, Texas.

Spurrier celebrates birthday while wearing festive hat

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It's simultaneously frustrating and beautiful that the iPhone photographer didn't tap the area on his screen where Spurrier's face is. This would have refocused the photo on the Head Ball Coach rather than that patio chair in the foreground. As it is, we have a busy scene with relatives showering Spurrier with attention while Steve himself looks unamused, as if the big picture of getting older and eventually dying just hit him. At least he agreed to wear the hat on his 69th birthday.

Carolina Spring Football Wrapup

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I chatted with Saturday Edge regarding how Carolina football is looking after spring practice. Follow the link to see what I had to say.

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