Jan. 16, 2014
CLEVELAND – Colorado State ranks No. 49 in the nation for strongest athletic programs through the first half of the academic year, the second-best ranking among Mountain West institutions. The Rams earned 118 points in the Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup fall standings.
The point system was developed as a joint effort between the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) and USA Today. Points are awarded based on each institution’s finish in up to 20 sports – 10 women’s and 10 men’s.
Colorado State’s 118 points included 48 for men’s cross country, 45 for football and 25 for women’s volleyball. Points are awarded based on a team’s finish in the NCAA championship postseason for all sports except football. FBS football teams earn points based on their final ranking in the USA Today poll or bowl game outcome.
Sports included for the fall standings are men’s and women’s cross country, women’s field hockey, football, men’s and women’s soccer, women’s volleyball and men’s water polo. CSU competes in five of the eight sports, earning recognition in three.
The CSU football team finished 2013 with an 8-5 record – the most wins since 2002 – including a come-from-behind victory over Washington State in the New Mexico Bowl. The men’s cross country team, under second-year Head Coach Art Siemers, ranked as high as No. 15 nationally and earned a trip to the NCAA championship. The women’s volleyball squad won a fifth consecutive Mountain West championship and played in the NCAA tournament for the 19th year in a row, setting a program record with a .933 winning percentage (28-2).
This marks CSU’s highest ranking in the fall standings of the Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup since 2003-04. The ranking system is in its 20th season. New Mexico (No. 17) was the only MW institution ranked ahead of the Rams.
The first Division I winter standings will be released on March 27, and the final rankings for the academic year will be posted after the conclusion of the men’s baseball season.