June 30, 2014
By Jerry Hill
Going into the spring sports, Baylor was stuck in 51st place in the Learfield Sports Directors' Cup Division I standings and lagging behind the likes of Harvard, Providence, Dartmouth and Denver.
But it was the traditionally strong spring sports that came to the rescue again.
With five top-15 finishes, including softball's third-place showing at the Women's College World Series, Baylor posted its 11th consecutive top-50 finish and moved up to 31st in the final standings with 710.5 points.
For the 20th consecutive year, Stanford led the way in the all-sports standings with 1,482 points, easily outdistancing runner-up Florida (1,216.50). Rounding out the top five were Notre Dame (1,128.25), Virginia (1,118.50) and Penn State (1,113.00), with Texas leading all Big 12 teams and finishing sixth overall with 1,093 points.
The Directors' Cup standings use your points from up to 20 sports - 10 men's and 10 women's - with national champions in each sport collecting 100 points.
Under the watch of Baylor's Director of Athletics, Ian McCaw, Baylor has posted 11 of its top 14 finishes in the Cup's 21-year history. This year's finish tied for the third-best in school history (2009-10) - topped only by 25th-place finishes in 2004-05 and 2011-12 in the "Year of the Bear" - and the second-most points behind the 726 total scored in 2011-12.
"Baylor has one of the top athletics programs in the nation and, once again, many of our teams experienced outstanding seasons," said McCaw, who has never finished out of the top 50 in his 11 years at Baylor. "I commend our coaches, staff and student-athletes on another special year filled with extraordinary accomplishment.
"God has shown us great favor, and we are blessed with strong support from Baylor's Board of Regents, senior administration and Baylor Nation."
With the year broken down into three seasons, Baylor scored 63.0 points in the fall, 235.0 in the winter and 412.50 in the spring.
Football carried the weight in the fall with its first Big 12 championship and BCS bowl bid, finishing 13th in the final standings with an 11-2 record.
Highlighting the winter sports, the women's basketball team made it back to the Elite Eight and won 32 games despite returning only one starter in All-American point guard Odyssey Sims. The men's team made a Sweet 16 for the third time in five years, while the men's and women's indoor track and field teams both posted top-30 finishes.
With seven of the eight spring sports making postseason play, Baylor was 15th among all schools in spring-only scoring with 412.50 points. That alone was more than half of the Big 12 teams scored for the whole year.
The softball team made its third World Series appearance in eight years and reached the semifinals for the second time in four years, rallying from a seven-run deficit to knock off Kentucky, 8-7, in eight innings.
Men's tennis swept the Big 12 regular-season and tournament titles and reached the NCAA quarterfinals for the 10th time in program history, while the women also captured a pair of conference titles and made it to the Sweet 16 for the 10th time.
The men's and women's golf teams also picked up points with regional berths, but it was the track teams that capped it all off with a pair of top-15 finishes.
Sparked by freshman sprinter Trayvon Bromell's title in the 100 meters, the men posted their first top-10 finish in six years (8th), while the women came in at 14th buoyed by top-four individual finishes from Rachel Johnson and Tiffani McReynolds.
Baylor won a school-record seven Big 12 championships this year and ranks second in the league with 48 conference titles over the last 11 years. This year, 16 of Baylor's 19 intercollegiate sports made postseason appearances.
BAYLOR'S DIRECTORS' CUP FINISHES
Year Place Points
1993-94 109th 105.00
1994-95 64th 197.50
1995-96 120th 98.50
1996-97 125th 106.50
1997-98 65th 105.00
1998-99 39th 197.50
1999-2000 43rd 105.00
2000-01 54th 197.50
2001-02 40th 105.00
2002-03 69th 197.50
2003-04 47th 407.25
2004-05 25th 570.50
2005-06 32nd 511.00
2006-07 38th 510.25
2007-08 42nd 477.50
2008-09 33rd 611.75
2009-10 31st 633.00
2010-11 35th 623.75
2011-12 25th 726.00
2012-13 45th 498.00
2013-14 31st 710.50