Johns Hopkins Tops Learfield Directors' Cup Fall Standings
Women's Cross Country NCAA Title, Five Other NCAA Teams Lead to Top Ranking
BALTIMORE, MD - For the first time in program history, Johns Hopkins sits atop the final Learfield Directors' Cup standings at the end of a season. On the strength of a fifth national championship in six years in women's cross country and appearances in NCAA Championship competition by five other teams, Johns Hopkins totaled 383 points to rank first in the final 2017-18 Learfield Directors' Cup Fall standings.
Prior to this year, Hopkins had ranked as high as third on three different occasions at the end of the fall (2012, 2013, 2016); JHU finished a program-best second overall in 2014-15.
Following Johns Hopkins in the top five of the final fall standings this year are MIT (319.5), Middlebury (301), St. Thomas MN (270) and Wisconsin LaCrosse (270).
There are more than 400 schools competing under the NCAA Division III banner and 190 of those schools scored points in the Directors' Cup standings in the fall. Johns Hopkins, which has eight consecutive final top 15 finishes in the Directors' Cup standings to its credit, added points in women's soccer, men's soccer, volleyball, men's cross country and football to go along with the women's cross country national championship.
Johns Hopkins' six NCAA-qualifying teams were the most in program history in the fall and the most of any Division III school in the nation this fall.
Head coach Bobby Van Allen's women's cross country team led the way for Johns Hopkins once again in the fall with its fifth national championship. The title earned 100 points for JHU in the Directors' Cup standings and marks the 11th straight year the team has earned a trip to the NCAAs. The women's cross country team has earned 833 Directors' Cup points in the last 11 years and Johns Hopkins is the first Division III school to produce five women's cross country national championships in a six-year span in more than 20 years; the Blue Jays' five titles in the last six years are also the most of any Division III program in any sport over that time.
Van Allen also guided the Blue Jay men's cross country team to a 17th-place finish at the NCAA Championships; a showing that was good for 57 Directors' Cup points. This is the seventh consecutive year that the Blue Jays have earned Directors' Cup points.
Leo Weil's women's soccer team made a run to the NCAA Quarterfinals for the sixth time since 2009 and picked up 73 Directors' Cup points. Under Weil's guidance, the Blue Jays have accumulated 835 all-time Directors' Cup points, including 790 during their current 13-year run of qualifying for the NCAA Tournament.
Returning to the NCAA Tournament in 2017 was the men's soccer team under the direction of head coach Craig Appleby. The Blue Jays earned two wins on the opening weekend of the tournament before falling on penalty kicks in the Sweet 16. The run in the NCAAs was good for 64 Directors' Cup points and marked the team's fourth Sweet 16 appearance under Appleby.
The first-ever Sweet 16 appearance for the Johns Hopkins volleyball team was good for 64 Directors' Cup points. Head coach Tim Cole's Blue Jays made their fifth trip to the NCAAs in the last seven years and advanced to the regional title match before being eliminated. Cole has taken the Blue Jays one step farther in each of the team's three trips to the NCAAs since he took over the program in 2013.
The Johns Hopkins football team earned its seventh straight bid to the NCAA Playoffs and its ninth since 2005. Head coach Jim Margraff's Blue Jays earned 25 Directors' Cup points with their appearance in the playoffs. Johns Hopkins is one of just five teams in the nation that has qualified for the NCAAs in each of the last seven years.
The Learfield Directors' Cup was developed as a joint effort between the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) and USA Today. Through the course of the year, Directors' Cup points are awarded based on a school's finish in up to 18 sports - nine men and nine women - in NCAA Championships. New to the scoring structure this year in Division III, men's and women's soccer and men's and women's basketball must be included by every school in their scoring total. Previously, the top nine men's and women's scoring teams could be counted; now, regardless of whether a school's soccer and basketball teams qualify for the NCAAs, they must be counted.
About Learfield: An industry leader for more than four decades, Learfield has a deep presence in the college athletics landscape nationwide. It manages the multimedia and sponsorship rights for more than 120 collegiate institutions, conferences and arenas, and supports athletics departments at all competitive levels as title sponsor of the prestigious Learfield Directors' Cup. Learfield also provides its collegiate partners access to professional concessions and ticket sales; branding, licensing and trademark consulting; digital and social platform expertise; campus-wide business and sponsorship development; and venue and technology systems through its affiliated companies.
2017-18 Learfield Directors' Cup
Final Division III Fall Standings (12-21-2017) Top 10
1 - Johns Hopkins (383.0 points)
2 - MIT (319.5)
3 - Middlebury (301.0)
4T - St. Thomas (MN) (270.0)
4T - Wisconsin LaCrosse (270)
6 - Messiah (263.0)
7 - Chicago (259.5)
8 - Calvin (254.5)
9 - Wartburg (253.0)
10 - Washington-St. Louis (249.0)
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