University of Kentucky Athletics’ historic run of success continues with the third-highest finish in school history – 12th place – in the final 2020-21 Learfield IMG College Directors’ Cup standings released Friday.
“In the most challenging year in our memory, and perhaps the most challenging year in collegiate athletics history, our teams, athletes, coaches and staff persevered with much success,” Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart said. “We will celebrate this success, and also use it for motivation as we look ahead to the coming year in our pursuit of being among the elite athletics departments in the nation.”
The finish is third-best in school history, behind standings of 10th in 2016-17 and 11th in 2014-15. UK Athletics also extended its streaks of four years in a row in the top 20 and nine consecutive years in the top 30, not including the 2019-20 school year when there were no standings kept because of the cancellation of winter and spring sports championships. The Directors’ Cup began in 1993-94 and the best seven finishes in school history have been under Barnhart, all of which have come in the last eight years.
The Directors’ Cup measures competitive success for more than 350 Division I schools. For each NCAA-sanctioned sport, points are awarded based on NCAA championship participation. This year, 16 of UK’s 22 teams reached postseason play and scored points toward UK’s final Directors’ Cup tally.
Rifle and volleyball led the way with national championships and three more finished ninth, gymnastics, men’s soccer and softball. Also landing in the top 20 were women’s swimming and diving (11th), women’s indoor track and field (13th), men’s indoor track and field (14th), men’s outdoor track and field (15th), women’s basketball (17th), men’s tennis (17th), women’s tennis (17th) and women’s golf (18th). Complete finishes and point totals by sport are as follows:
- Rifle – first, 100 points
- Volleyball – first, 100 points
- Gymnastics – ninth, 66.75 points
- Men’s soccer – ninth, 64 points
- Softball – ninth, 64 points
- Women’s swimming and diving – 11th, 66 points
- Women’s indoor track and field – 13th, 63 points
- Men’s indoor track and field – 14th, 60.75 points
- Men’s outdoor track and field – 15th, 59.25 points
- Women’s basketball – 17th, 50 points
- Women’s tennis – 17th, 50 points
- Men’s tennis – 17th, 50 points
- Women’s golf – 18th, 55.5 points
- Women’s track and field – 21st, 52 points
- Football – 26th, 45 points
- Men’s swimming and diving – 30th, 11 points