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Arkansas atop SEC and 15th in nation

Arkansas atop SEC and 15th in nation

FAYETTEVILLE – The University of Arkansas continues to lead the Southeastern Conference and rank among the nation’s top programs in the third edition of the fall Learfield Sports Directors Cup standings released on Tuesday by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA).

The Razorbacks are ranked 15th nationally after earning a total of 213.5 points in the fall semester. Arkansas is ranked ahead of all 13 other SEC programs, with Florida (21st) being the only other conference program within the top 30 of the Directors Cup. The final fall Directors Cup standings are scheduled to be released Jan. 9.

Arkansas’ most recent contribution came from the Razorback Volleyball program which advanced to the NCAA Tournament for the second-consecutive season in 2013. Arkansas finished the regular season with a 16-14 record competing against one of the nation’s toughest schedules under head coach Robert Pulliza. The NCAA tournament appearance earned the Razorbacks 25 points in the most recent standings.

The Directors Cup is a competition that tracks the nation’s most successful intercollegiate athletic programs for their athletic performances throughout the year. This week’s standings reflect points awarded for men’s and women’s cross country, men’s and women’s soccer, men’s water polo, women’s volleyball and field hockey.

Coach Colby Hale and the Razorback soccer team earned 64 points for a run to the Round of 16 in the NCAA Tournament. This year’s bid, marked the first time the Razorback soccer program advanced to the NCAA Tournament and the first time the program tallied points in the Directors Cup. The team finished the season with a record of 15-8-1 and ranked 24th nationally in the Top Drawer Soccer Postseason Rankings.

Coach Chris Bucknam and the men’s cross country team earned 64.5 points after finishing 12th in the nation at the NCAA Cross Country Championships. Coach Lance Harter and the women’s cross country team tallied 60 points after a 15th-place finish at nationals. Both the men’s and women’s cross country teams won their respective SEC championships before going on to earn top-15 national finishes.

In 2012-13, the University of Arkansas finished in the top 25 of the Learfield Sports Directors Cup for the third straight year and the fifth time in the past six years. The Razorbacks finished No. 21 and accumulated a school record 830 total points to extend the most successful stretch of Directors Cup success in school history. In addition to last year’s 21st-place finish, the Razorbacks finished 20th in 2011-12, 24th in 2010-11, 25th in 2008-09 and 24th in 2007-08.

The Directors’ Cup program has been tracking the success of the nation’s top intercollegiate athletics programs since 1993-94.

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