The University of Texas placed fifth in the final 2017-18 Division I Learfield Directors’ Cup standings, the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) announced Saturday. This marked the highest finish in the standings for Texas since a fifth-place showing in 2007-08.
UT, the top-ranked institution in the Big 12 Conference and the state of Texas, finishes among the Top 10 for a fifth-straight year and for the sixth time in the last seven seasons. Stanford won the Cup with 1,442.00 points and was followed in the top five by UCLA (1,326.00), Florida (1,216.00), USC (1,147.00) and Texas (1,143.25).
Texas has now recorded a Top-10 finish a total of 19 times in the 25-year history of the Directors’ Cup: 2nd (2001-02, 2002-03 and 2004-05), 3rd (2005-06), 4th (1995-96), 5th (2007-08 and 2017-18), 6th (2008-09, 2011-12 and 2013-14), 7th (1993-94, 1996-97 and 2016-17), 8th (2006-07), 9th (1999-2000, 2014-15 and 2015-16) and 10th (1994-95 and 2003-04).
The Learfield Directors’ Cup was developed as a joint effort between NACDA and USA Today. A revised scoring system was implemented for the 2017-18 season. Division I schools could score points in a maximum of 19 sports, four of which must be baseball, men’s basketball, women’s basketball and women’s volleyball. Previously, the scoring structure for Division I for the past 20-plus years had been a maximum of 20 total sports scored (10 men’s sports and 10 women’s sports).
During the 2017-18 academic year, Texas won one NCAA team title (men’s swimming and diving) and registered 10 Top-10 NCAA Championship team finishes. UT recorded Top-10 NCAA performances in men’s swimming and diving (National Champions), rowing (third), men’s golf (tied for fifth), volleyball (tied for fifth), women’s swimming and diving (sixth), baseball (tied for seventh), women’s basketball (tied for ninth), soccer (tied for ninth), women’s tennis (tied for ninth) and men’s tennis (tied for ninth).
Texas also received points from men’s indoor track and field (12th), women’s golf (tied for 12th), men’s outdoor track and field (25th), football (scored as 26th place – bowl game winners not ranked in the final USA Today poll), men’s cross country (30th), women’s cross country (31st), men’s basketball (tied for 33rd), softball (tied for 33rd) and women’s outdoor track and field (tied for 34th).
In addition to its success on the national level, Texas claimed eight Big 12 Conference championships during the 2017-18 calendar year (volleyball, men’s swimming and diving, women’s swimming and diving, women’s indoor track and field, women’s tennis, women’s golf, rowing and baseball) and a pair of Big 12 postseason tournament titles (men’s tennis and women’s tennis). UT has captured a league-best 175 all-time Big 12 Championships (regular season and postseason) through the completion of the 2017-18 season.
The Big 12 was one of two autonomy conferences in which all teams finished in the top 72.