Kentucky Athletics 18th in Final Directors’ Cup Standings
LEXINGTON, Ky. – With seven teams notching top-10 national finishes in their sports, University of Kentucky Athletics finished in 18th place in the final 2022-23 Learfield Directors’ Cup national all-sports standings released Wednesday.
The 18th-place slot marked the sixth consecutive year that Kentucky has ranked in the nation’s top 20 overall athletics programs. Among the 363 NCAA Division I institutions, only 10 have earned top-20 status each of the last six years – Kentucky, Florida, Florida State, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio State, Southern California, Stanford, Texas and UCLA.
UK also extended a streak of 11 straight years in the top 30, not including the 2019-20 school year when there were no standings kept because of the cancellation of winter and spring sports championships. The Directors’ Cup began in 1993-94 and the best nine finishes in school history have been under current Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart, all of which have come in the last 10 years of standings.
UK extended yet another streak in the realm of conference competition. The Wildcats placed seventh among the 14 Southeastern Conference institutions, marking the 10th straight year that UK has finished in the top half of the highly competitive league.
“We’re gratified by the consistency of performances by our athletes, coaches and staff in achieving another year in the top 20,” Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart said. “At the same time, our student-athletes have continued success in the classroom – school records this year for graduation rates, total number of graduates and total number of Academic All-Americans, along with extending our streak of 22 consecutive semesters of a department-wide 3.0 grade-point average.
“Of course, we’re always thankful for the Big Blue Nation. Our fans are the bedrock of our program and our goal of even higher levels of success will not be possible without their support.”
The Directors’ Cup measures across-the-board competitive success for the 363 Division I schools. For each NCAA-sanctioned sport, points are awarded based on NCAA championship participation. This year, 16 of UK’s 22 eligible teams reached postseason play and scored points toward UK’s final Directors’ Cup tally.
The rifle team led the way with a third-place national finish. UK also got top-20 finishes from men’s tennis (fifth), women’s outdoor track & field (sixth), gymnastics (seventh), baseball, volleyball and men’s soccer (ninth), men’s basketball and women’s indoor track and field (17th) and women’s swimming & diving and men’s indoor track & field (19th).
Here is the list of UK sports that earned Directors’ Cup points this year, along with national finish and points earned.
- Rifle – third, 85 points
- Men’s tennis – fifth, 73 points
- Women’s outdoor track and field – sixth, 73.5 points
- Gymnastics – seventh, 71.3 points
- Baseball – ninth, 64 points
- Volleyball – ninth, 64 points
- Men’s soccer – ninth, 64 points
- Men’s Basketball – 17th, 50 points
- Women’s indoor track and field – 17th, 57 points
- Women’s swimming and diving – 19th, 55 points
- Men’s indoor track and field – 19th, 54 points
- Softball – 33rd, 37.5 points
- Men’s swimming and diving – 28th 45 points
- Women’s golf – 31st, 40.5 points
- Men’s outdoor track and field – 36th, 38 points
- Football – 51st, 25 points
Here is Kentucky’s history in the Directors’ Cup, with progression of the school record in bold:
1993-94: 37th place
1994-95: 46th place
1995-96: 32nd place
1996-97: 26th place
1998-99: 49th place
1999-2000: 70th place
2000-01: 37th place
2001-02: 36th place
2002-03: 50th place
2003-04: 45th place
2004-05: 35th place
2005-06: 33rd place
2006-07: 45th place
2007-08: 36th place
2008-09: 34th place
2009-10: 29th place
2010-11: 36th place
2011-12: 29th place
2012-13: 25th place
2013-14: 11th place
2014-15: 22nd place
2015-16: 26th place
2016-17: 10th place
2017-18: 17th place
2018-19: 14th place
2019-20: no standings because of pandemic
2020-21: 12th place
2021-22: 9th place
2022-23: 18th place