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Three Big 12 Schools Finish In Top 25 In 2010-11 Learfield Sports Directors' Cup

For the 17th straight year, Stanford ruled the Learfield Sports Directors' Cup competition, but the Big 12 placed three of its schools in the top 15 out of 281 NCAA Division I schools.

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Big 12 Conference
Big 12 Conference

Three Big 12 schools completed the 2010-11 athletic program year ranked in the top 25 of the NCAA Division I Learfield Directors' Cup standings.

In the final rankings released July 1 by the National Association of College Directors of Athletics, Texas A&M finished eighth with 1,080.50 points, Oklahoma tenth (1,064.75) and Texas 12th (996.75). Points are awarded on the basis of how each school finishes nationally in up to 20 different collegiate sports programs, 10 each in men's and women's sports. during the fall, winter and spring months and totaled for a final annual score.

Stanford ranked No. 1 in this year's Directors' Cup rankings for an unprecedented 17th consecutive year. The Cardinal amassed 1,550.25 points in 2010-11, including a ninth-place national finish in baseball this spring. Ohio State was second with 1,277.05 points, and California third, 57 points back of the Buckeyes, on the heels of a strong fifth-place finish in baseball, a sport the university was going to discontinue last fall. Rounding out the top five, Florida was fourth with 1,212.25 points, and Duke finished fifth, amassing 1,171.50 points.

Stanford won national championships this past year in men's gymnastics, women's water polo and women's lightweight crew-varsity eight, and three other Stanford sports teams finished second in NCAA championship events (women's soccer, women's tennis and women's rowing in 2010-11. Eighteen of the Cardinal's 35 intercollegiate athletic programs finished their season ranked in the top-10 nationally. In addition, seven of the Stanford coaches were named conference and/or regional coach of the year, and three others earned national coach of the year honors.

The Atlantic Coast Conference had the best performance among the major conferences, placing four teams (Duke, North Carolina, Virginia and Florida State in the top ten in the final Directors' Cup standings and five in the top 25.  The Southeastern Conference had six schools finish in the top 25, tied with the Pac-10. Four Big Ten schools were in the top 25 and three from the Big 12.

After, Texas A&M, Oklahoma and Texas among the Big 12 schools, Oklahoma State finished 32nd in the final Division 1 rankings for the Directors' Cup; Nebraska followed right behind, in 33rd; Baylor was 34th, Missouri 41st; Texas Tech 48th; Kansas State 58th; Iowa State 60th; Colorado 66th and Kansas placed 72nd out of 281 Division I institutions.

A year ago (2009-10), the same three Big 12 schools (Texas A&M, Oklahoma and Texas) also finished in the top 25 in the Directors' Cup standings. A&M again led the conference in the Directors' Cup competition, placing two spots higher last year, in sixth. Oklahoma ended up 12th and Texas was 15th.

The Learfield Sports Directors' Cup was established as a joint initiative between the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics and USA Today. Mike Alden, athletic director at Missouri, currently serves as 2nd vice president of the NACDA. Two  Big 12 athletic directors - Joe Castiglione at Oklahoma and former Iowa State AD Gene Smith - are past presidents of the NACDA.