Heading toward the determination of the winner of the 2013-14 Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup, gostanford.com will provide a progression of each of Stanford’s 19 consecutive victories. Here is the sixth, in 1999-2000:
Directors' Cup No. 6 (1999-2000) | 1999-2000 Season In Photos
THE ROSE BOWL Game represents the pinnacle of Stanford football. But Stanford hadn’t advanced to Pasadena in 28 years, the longest dry stretch in the program’s history.
That ended in the 1999 season when the Cardinal trounced Cal, 31-13, in the Big Game.
Stanford’s success was characterized the most by its defense, the “Trench Dogs,” and its leader, defensive lineman Willie Howard, a local product from Los Altos High who outfitted his linemates in dog-collar chains. One of them, Riall Johnson, had 15 sacks that season, including five against Washington State, and finished with a school-record 35 for his career.
Offensively, dynamic Troy Walters broke school and conference career records in receptions and receiving yards, led the nation in receiving yards per game, and won the Biletnikoff Award as the nation’s Most Outstanding Receiver.
An injured Howard and Walters played valiantly in the Rose Bowl, but the Cardinal fell to Wisconsin, 17-9, completing an 8-4 season under Tyrone Willingham.
Men’s outdoor track and field joined men’s tennis as Stanford’s two NCAA championship teams during the 1999-2000 academic year. Stanford also used NCAA runner-up finishes in baseball, women's tennis, women's golf, women's volleyball and men’s water polo to capture its sixth consecutive Directors’ Cup title. Other Stanford teams placing in the top five were women's cross country (3rd), women's swimming and diving (3rd), men's cross country (4th), fencing (4th), men's swimming and diving (4th).
Gabe Jennings, one of the most unique personalities in Stanford athletics history, was at his best in 2000, putting a face to the Cardinal’s first NCAA track and field championship since 1934.
Jennings, a free spirit in the truest sense of the term, followed his NCAA titles in the indoor mile and outdoor 1,500 with an Olympic trials victory in the 1,500 and earned berth on the U.S. team. The Stanford junior lived on the roof of a co-op in the Stanford foothills in the months leading up to the trials and was in top shape when he and Stanford teammate Michael Stember placed first and third to earn passage to Sydney.
The men’s track team, a power in the 1920s and 1930s, returned to the top after a pair of runner-up team finishes. Brad Hauser won the 5,000 and 10,000, and the distance-heavy Cardinal scored 23 points in the 10,000 alone.
Jennings and Stember remain as Stanford’s school record-holders in the 1,500 and 800, respectively, as does pole vaulter Toby Stevenson, the NCAA outdoor runner-up in 2000.
In men's tennis, Alex Kim became Stanford’s 13th NCAA singles champion and completed his season with a 48-7 record, establishing a school season mark for victories.
Kim’s play helped Stanford to a 28-1 record and to its 17th NCAA team title in the Dick Gould era. Gould earned his fourth ITA national Coach of the Year award and watched the Cardinal dominate in the postseason, outscoring NCAA tournament opponents, 24-1.
The Stanford baseball team posted its second consecutive 50-win season and reached the College World Series championship game. With help from a Craig Thompson grand slam, the Cardinal held a 5-2 lead over LSU going into the bottom of the eighth inning. However, the Tigers scored three in the eighth and got another in the ninth to earn a 6-5 victory over Stanford.
The Cardinal had won three elimination games in the NCAA Regional and Super Regional to advance to its 12th College World Series. Justin Wayne won 15 games, setting a Stanford pitching record that still stands, and was named first-team All-America.
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More highlights from 1999-2000:
• Kerri Walsh completed her Stanford career as a four-time first-team women’s volleyball All-American and earned her first Olympic berth, as a member of the United States’ indoor team. She would win three Olympic gold medals in beach volleyball.
• Thirty Stanford-affiliated athletes competed at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney and combined to win four gold, three silver, and three bronze medals.
• Misty Hyman pulled the upset of the Olympic swimming competition, beating Australian world and Olympic champion Susie O’Neill in her home waters in the 200-meter butterfly.
• A Cardinal men’s basketball team led by Mark Madsen, Jason Collins, and Casey Jacobsen, earned its second consecutive Pac-10 title, and reached the NCAA Sweet Sixteen before being eliminated by North Carolina. Stanford finished 27-4.
• Laura Granville won the first of her two NCAA singles titles, but was unable to prevent the Cardinal from losing to Georgia, 5-4, in the team championship.
• Sophomore Jessica Mendoza hit a school-record .475 and became the first Stanford player to be named Pac-10 Player of the Year.
• Felix Reichling and Eva Petschnigg won NCAA men’s and women’s foil championships for Cardinal fencing.
• Shannon Montague won a national solo synchronized swimming title.
The Final Count:
1) Stanford, 1,359.5
2) UCLA, 1,153.5
3) Michigan, 965
4) Penn State, 909
5) North Carolina, 908.5
Stanford’s Top Scoring Teams:
1 (tie), Men’s tennis, men’s track and field, each 100 points; 3 (tie), baseball, women’s golf, women’s tennis, women’s volleyball, and men’s water polo, each 90.
Directors' Cup No. 1: 1994-95
Directors' Cup No. 2: 1995-96
Directors' Cup No. 3: 1996-97
Directors' Cup No. 4: 1997-98
Directors' Cup No. 5: 1998-99