Sears Directors' race heats up

After finishing the fall season in fourth place in the Sears Director’s Cup standings, UCSD dropped to eighth place in the standings released at the conclusion of winter sports.

Guardian file photo

The Sears Directors’ Cup was developed by both the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics and USA Today to recognize the top athletic programs in the nation. Standings are based on a college’s national finish in up to 14 different sports: seven for men and seven for women. Each national champion receives 100 points.

Behind the strength of the women’s soccer (100 points), women’s volleyball (75 points) and men’s cross country teams (41 points), UCSD garnered 216 points in the fall — only 44 points behind first-place Western State College. Grand Valley State University (236 points) and UC Davis (224.5 points) finished second and third in the fall standings, respectively.

However, the winter sporting season was a different story for the Tritons. The 155 points earned by the women’s fencing, men’s swimming and women’s swimming teams weren’t enough to keep UCSD at the top, dropping it four spots to No. 8 in the nation. The winter standings include women’s and men’s basketball, ice hockey, swimming, indoor track and field, fencing, rifle, snow skiing and men’s wrestling.

The women’s swimming team’s fourth-place national finish provided 75 points for UCSD, while its male counterparts contributed 47 points by placing 13th in the NCAA finals. UCSD’s women’s fencing team was the only other winter sport to compete in nationals, finishing 19th and earning 33 points for UCSD.

Western State continued to maintain its grip on the top spot in the rankings by scoring in men’s indoor track and field, men’s wrestling, skiing and women’s indoor track and field to push its total point score to 500.

Jumping from sixth place to second place was the University of North Dakota, which placed in women’s basketball, men’s swimming, women’s swimming, men’s indoor track and field, and women’s indoor track and field to give it a total score of 476.5, only 24.5 behind Western State.

Truman State University moved up two spaces to occupy the No. 3 position with a score of 470.6. It is followed by South Dakota State University in fourth place with 457 points and Grand Valley State University in fifth with 423 points. UC Davis (403.5) and Adams State College (377) round out the rest of the field ahead of UCSD.

Sitting in eighth place with 371 total points, UCSD is looking for points from the multiple spring sports teams that are seeking to make some noise in the playoffs.

Looking at the standings of UCSD’s California Collegiate Athletic Association rivals, California State University Bakersfield is in 14th place with 265.5 points, and Cal Poly Pomona is the only other CCAA team in the top 50 — occupying the 39th spot with 161.5 points. Cal State Dominguez Hills and Cal State San Bernardino are tied for 62nd, Chico is 73rd and CSU Los Angeles and Sonoma State are tied for 81st to round out the CCAA teams in the top 100 rankings.

CSU Bakersfield and Cal Poly Pomona both won national championships in the winter sports season — Bakersfield in men’s swimming and Cal Poly Pomona in women’s basketball.