Nov. 18, 2010

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -A study analyzing hiring practices for football coaching vacancies is giving its highest grade ever to NCAA programs while cautioning that things still must improve.

The report released Thursday by the Black Coaches and Administrators awarded an overall A grade to 20 of the 34 schools that had an opening for a head coach last offseason.

That's the highest percentage (59 percent) of any of the seven studies conducted so far, and up from 34 percent last year. There were nine Bs, one C and four Fs.

Schools were graded on communication, hiring search, final candidates and time frame. They were notified in advance what the criteria would be each time there was a coaching vacancy. Three schools did not participate, receiving an automatic F.