June 30, 2011
STANFORD, Calif. -- -
Stanford Athletics has claimed its unprecedented 17th consecutive Learfield Sports Directors' Cup today, an award that is presented annually by the National Association of Collegiate Athletic Directors of America (NACDA), Learfield Sports and USA Today to the top intercollegiate athletic program in the nation.
Stanford finished with 1550.25 points, outdistancing Ohio State (1,227.05) and California (1,219.50) for its 17th straight title. Florida (1212.25), Duke (1171.50), North Carolina (1160.75), Virginia (1092.00), Texas A&M (1090.50), Florida State (1079.00) and Oklahoma (1064.75) round out the top-10.
After claiming national championships in the sports of men's gymnastics, women's water polo and women's lightweight crew-varsity eight, Stanford has won at least one NCAA team title for 35 consecutive years, an ongoing record. The national title won by men's gymnastics was particularly significant, as it marked Stanford's 100th NCAA team championship.
Three other Stanford teams - women's soccer, women's tennis and women's rowing -- placed second in NCAA championship competition.
Eighteen of Stanford's 35 intercollegiate programs finished their respective seasons ranked in the top-10 nationally, while eight teams were ranked first in the nation at some point during the year.
In addition, four Stanford student-athletes - Christen Press (women's soccer), Annika Dries (women's water polo), Ashley Hansen (softball) and Alix Klineman (women's volleyball) - earned national players of the year in their respective sports. Hilary Barte and Mallory Burdette were named ITA Doubles Team of the Year, while Owen Marecic was named the inaugural recipient of the Paul Hornung Award as the most versatile player in college football.
Three Stanford coaches - Tara VanDerveer (women's basketball), Thom Gliemi (men's gymnastics) and Al Acosta (women's lightweight rowing) - were named national coaches of the year, while seven Cardinal coaches earned conference/region coach of the year honors.
Stanford`s student-athletes also continue to display an unwavering commitment to academic excellence, as a total of 20 Stanford student-athletes earned academic All-America status as recognized by the College Sports Information Directors of America. In addition, eight student-athletes garnered NCAA Postgraduate Scholarships. All 35 programs exceeded the NCAA's Academic Progress Rate (APR) standards while five Cardinal teams earned perfect scores of 1,000.
The Learfield Sports Directors' Cup was developed as a joint effort between the National Association of Collegiate Athletic Directors of America (NACDA) and the USA Today in 1993-94 in an effort to honor universities that strive for success in all of their sports programs. The program was expanded in 1995-96 to include Division II, III and the NAIA. Each institution is awarded points based on an institutions' finish in 20 sports -- 10 each for men and women.