June 13, 2004

NKU FINISHES 10TH IN DIRECTOR’S CUP STANDINGS

Norse athletics place 10th nationally

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. - Northern Kentucky University’s athletics program has registered its latest achievement with a national Top 10 finish in the United States Sports Academy Director’s Cup standings.

NKU finished 10th nationally - the highest posting in the school’s history. The previous best was a No. 20 finish in 2002.

“Our goal is to provide the best possible programs for our student-athletes that compete successfully at the conference, regional and national levels,” NKU athletic director Jane Meier said. “We are doing this and what is very encouraging is we are doing it with 75 percent of our student-athletes residing in the northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati areas. We are fortunate to have such quality student-athletes in our own community who can continue their education and compete successfully at the collegiate level.”

NKU tallied 472.5 points in the Director’s Cup rankings, the bulk of which came from its finishes in softball, men’s and women’s golf, and men’s and women’s tennis. NKU finished seventh overall in softball and ninth overall in women’s golf.

“You look at where we are and where we’ve come from,” Meier said, “and you can’t help but wonder where we might go from here. If we can make some realistic improvements in some key areas, we would improve our chance to challenge for the No. 1 spot in the United States Sports Academy Director’s Cup standings.”

The Director’s Cup is presented annually by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics, United States Sports Academy and USA TODAY to the best overall collegiate athletics program in the country.

Developed as a joint effort between USA TODAY and NACDA, the United States Sports Academy Director’s Cup program is the only all-sports competition that recognizes the institution in each of the four categories (NCAA Divisions I, II and III, and the NAIA) with the best overall athletics program.

Grand Valley State University (Mich.) finished first in Division II after runner-up finishes in each of the last two years. Of the 282 eligible colleges and universities in the NCAA Division II, a total of 225 (80 percent) scored points in the United States Sports Academy Director's Cup competition.