Pigs hold onto top 10 in Directors’ Cup
LINK TO FULL RANKING
Fayetteville, Ark. – A trip back to the Sweet Sixteen of the NCAA Gymnastics Championships, per Razorback Gymnastics helped Arkansas maintain its top 10 in the latest winter edition of the 2021-22 Learfield Directors Cup rankings released Thursday by the National Association of Collegiate Directors of America (NACDA).
The Razorbacks currently have 634.25 points in the Directors Cup and sit 10th. The rankings released Thursday included men’s and women’s basketball, women’s bowling, men’s and women’s cross country, fencing, women’s field hockey, men’s and women’s gymnastics, men’s and women’s hockey, football, rifle , skiing, men’s and women’s soccer, men’s and women’s football. swimming and diving, men’s and women’s track and field, women’s volleyball, men’s water polo and wrestling.
The Directors’ Cup tracks the nation’s most successful intercollegiate athletic programs for their performances throughout the year. Arkansas ranks second among all programs in the Southeastern Conference and is one of seven league programs in the top 25 in the rankings.
Arkansas advanced to the Regional Finals for a second straight season. The Razorbacks finished second in its NCAA Norman (Oklahoma) Regional session and advanced to the Sweet Sixteen. Coach Jordyn Wieber and the GymBacks concluded their tag team season, one step closer to competing for a national championship. Arkansas earned 60.75 points for the NCAA finish.
Coach Eric Musselman and the Razorback men’s basketball team made a deep run in the NCAA Tournament for the second straight year. The Razorbacks won three games in the draw, including a victory over No. 1 Gonzaga in the Sweet Sixteen to advance to the Elite Eight and the Western Regional Finals. It was the first time Arkansas had qualified for the Elite Eight in consecutive seasons since the 1993-94 and 1994-95 campaigns. For its efforts, Arkansas earned 73 Directors’ Cup points.
The Razorbacks continued their tradition of athletic excellence during the indoor season. Both the men’s and women’s teams won the SEC Indoor Track and Field team titles before placing in the top 10 at the NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championships. Coach Lance Harter led the women’s team to a fourth-place finish at the national meet. The podium produced 80 points. Coach Chris Bucknam and the men’s team earned a seventh-place finish to earn 72 points toward the program’s Directors’ Cup point total.
The Arkansas women’s swimming and diving team placed in the top 30 at the NCAA Swimming and Diving Championships. Coach Neil Harper’s team finished 28and in the national encounter, earning 46 points in the Directors’ Cup.
Arkansas made a return trip to the NCAA Women’s Basketball Tournament, having also qualified for the Big Dance in 2020-21. Without a pandemic-shortened 2019-20 campaign, the Razorbacks would have earned three straight NCAA appearances. Coach Mike Neighbors and the Razorbacks had 25 points for earning a spot in the NCAA Tournament field.
Arkansas started the fall season with a pair of SEC championships and top-10 NCAA cross country finishes. The men’s cross country team earned 80 points for a podium at the national meet, finishing in fourth place. Razorback’s women’s cross country team also shook the top 10 with an eighth-place finish, earning 70.5 points in the Directors’ Cup.
Arkansas won its third consecutive SEC regular-season crown before advancing to the Elite Eight round of the NCAA Women’s Soccer Tournament for the first time. The program’s playoff record earned the Hogs 73 points.
Coach Sam Pittman and the Razorback football team enjoyed one of the best gridiron seasons in recent history in 2021. Arkansas capped off a remarkable 9-4 season with a 24-10 victory over Penn State in the Outback Bowl. The Razorbacks earned a final national ranking of No. 20 in the USA Today/AFCA Coaches poll, totaling 54 points in the Directors’ Cup standings.
In 2020-21, Razorback Athletics had one of the most successful years in school history, including a program-best eighth-place finish in the 2020-21 Learfield IMG Directors’ Cup. Arkansas’ previous best result was 14and. The Directors’ Cup program has tracked the success of the nation’s top intercollegiate athletic programs since 1993-94.
The Razorbacks have won an NCAA title (women’s indoor track and field), eight NCAA top-10 finishes, and a remarkable 10 regular-season and Southeastern Conference tournament championships, including SEC triple crowns in cross country. -men’s and women’s country and track and field, a second consecutive regular season crown in soccer, the program’s first regular season title in softball, and a regular season and tournament championship in baseball. Arkansas’ championship total led the league and doubled the next closest SEC schedule.