On Wednesday, the Salisbury University athletics program was recognized by the National Association of College Directors of Athletics (NACDA) as one of the best programs in the country, finishing the 2009-10 season ranked ninth in the Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup Division III Final Standings.
Salisbury compiled 673.25 points to finish ninth overall. Williams College (1,292.25) captured the team title, followed in the Top 5 by Amherst (905.25), Washington (Mo., 858.50), Middlebury (751.00) and Illinois Wesleyan (704.25)
CAC rival Mary Washington finished 39th in the 2009-10 Directors Cup chase with 375.50 points. Other CAC teams to earn points this season were Wesley (168th, 108.00), York (tied for 197th, 89.00), Stevenson (tied for 205th, 83.00) along with Marymount and St. Mary's, which both tied for 225th place (64.00).
New CAC member Frostburg State compiled 75 points in its last season as a member of the Allegheny Mountain Collegiate Conference to tie for 213rd place.
Salisbury finds itself in familiar territory with the top 10 ranking. The Sea Gulls were ranked No. 8 at the conclusion of the fall season after the Salisbury University women’s field hockey team captured the program’s fifth national championship and two other teams (men’s soccer, volleyball) advanced to the NCAA tournament.
In the spring, the women’s lacrosse team added to Salisbury’s point totals by capturing the program’s first-ever national title. Additionally, the trio of seniors Delannie Spriggs (Owings, Md.), Cory Beebe (Medina, Ohio) and Brandon Fugett (Randallstown, Md.) placed second overall at the NCAA Division III Track & Field Championships. Three other Sea Gull teams (baseball, men’s lacrosse, softball) also advanced to the NCAA tournament, giving Salisbury a grand total of 673.25 points in the final standings.
This year’s No. 9 ranking marks Salisbury’s highest finish in Directors’ Cup standings. Previously, SU's highest ranking was 11th at the end of the 2004-05 season. 310 Division III teams earned points in this year's standings.
The Learfield Sports Directors' Cup was developed as a joint effort between the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics and USA Today. Points are awarded based on each institution's finish in up to 18 sports -- nine women's and nine men's.