Gophers finish 14th in Director’s Cup

The finish is Minnesota’s highest since 2003.

With the final standings announced Monday, the University of Minnesota ranked 14th in Learfield Sports DirectorsâÄô Cup , which measures the nationâÄôs top overall athletics program. The 14th place finish is the Gophers highest since 2003 and gives Minnesota 14 consecutive top-30 finishes. This is the 16th year the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics has awarded the best overall athletics program the DirectorsâÄô Cup. Each school receives points based on how their teams perform in different sports. Stanford has won the cup the past 15 years. Minnesota received points in 20 of its 25 sports and ranked second after the winter season , but its standing dropped after the end of the spring athletic season. Five Minnesota squads reached tournament play in the spring, but none of the teams finished in the top 10 nationally. Athletics Director Joel Maturi said he was hoping to see the spring sports earn a few more points, but he expected some other schools to pass Minnesota with the spring season. Southern schools generally perform better in what are considered summer sports. In a previous interview, Maturi said he hoped Minnesota could stay in the top 15 this year, and now says heâÄôs hoping to break the top 10 in years to come. The Gophers finished third in the Big Ten behind only Michigan and Ohio State, who finished fifth and 10th, respectively. While the 14th-place finish leaves room to grow, Maturi said finishing this high among the 331 schools is a great accomplishment. âÄúWeâÄôre in the top 4 or 5 percent of every Division I institution in America which is a tremendous, positive reflection on our student athletes and our coaches and our staff,âÄù he said. âÄúI think all of Minnesota should be proud.âÄù