Penn State Moves up to Sixth in Learfield Directors’ Cup Standings

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Powered by the wrestling team’s fifth NCAA Championship in the past six years, Penn State Athletics has moved up to No. 6 in the Learfield Directors’ Cup standings. The Nittany Lions are five points out of fifth place.

In the first winter sports compilation, Penn State climbed to from No. 10 to No. 6, having earned its ninth consecutive Top 10 fall finish. Penn State and Stanford are the nation’s only institutions to place in the Top 10 in the final fall Directors’ Cup standings in each of the past nine years.

Under the leadership of Director of Athletics Sandy Barbour, Penn State was No. 8 in the final 2014-15 Learfield Directors’ Cup standings, earning its third consecutive Top 10 finish and 11th overall. The Nittany Lions are among only nine programs nationwide to have finished in the Top 25 in all 22 Learfield Directors’ Cup final standings.

Led by a pair of national champions and five finalists, the Penn State wrestling team was dominant in winning its fifth NCAA title in the past six years, scoring 123 points to runner-up Oklahoma State’s 97.5. Directed by Coach Cael Sanderson, Nico Megaludis won the 125-pound national title and Zain Retherford captured the 149-pound crown to help give Penn State 100 Directors’ Cup points.

Guided Coach John Gondak, first-team indoor track and field All-Americans Rachel Fatherly and Brannon Kidder also boosted Penn State’s Directors’ Cup total, with the teams combining for 39 points.

Stanford leads the Directors’ Cup and is followed by Michigan (541.25 points), Minnesota (532), Ohio State (522.5), Virginia (465.25) and Penn State (461). North Carolina, Oregon, USC and Washington round out the Top 10.

Institutions from the Big Ten, Atlantic Coast and Pac-12 conferences claimed the top 10 spots in Learfield Directors’ Cup standings.

The Learfield Directors’ Cup standings will be updated in April.

Penn State student-athletes have an NCAA Graduation Success Rate of 88 percent and have earned 191 Capital One/CoSIDA Academic All-America selections, the fourth-highest total among Division I programs. The Nittany Lions have won 76 team national championships and 97 Big Ten Conference crowns all-time and their 29 NCAA Championships since 1992-93 are the most of any Big Ten institution.

The Learfield Directors’ Cup standings were 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.

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