Class competition by Greg St. Martin May 23, 2011 Share Facebook LinkedIn Twitter Photo by Jim Pierce. Four Northeastern University varsity teams earned Public Recognition Awards for academic excellence from the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA), an honor bestowed upon the academically top 10 percent of teams nationwide. The men’s indoor track, men’s outdoor track, women’s ice hockey and women’s rowing teams scored in the top tier of their sport’s Academic Progress Rate (APR), which tracks the academic success of every Division 1 athlete. “The education of our student-athletes must always be our top priority,” said Peter Roby, Northeastern’s director of athletics. “To have four teams earn Public Recognition Awards is evidence of our commitment to academics and is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our student-athletes, our coaches and our academic staff. We are very proud of their success.” The APR provides an annual scorecard of academic achievement. In the six years since the NCAA instituted the academic reform program, Husky sports teams have earned 10 Public Recognition Awards — eight of them in the past two years. “Most student-athletes excel at balancing their academic and athletic commitments, yet each year there are those who perform at extraordinary levels,” said NCAA President Mark Emmert, who announced this year’s awards on May 17. “By achieving the highest levels of academic success as a team, these young men and women truly embody what it means to be a successful NCAA student-athlete.” Nationwide, 909 of the 6,385 eligible Division I teams were publically recognized this year for high academic achievement. The list includes 525 women’s teams and 384 men’s or mixed squads.