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How Texas took home the 2023-24 LEARFIELD Directors' Cup

Joe Cookby:Joe Cook06/10/24


In the Texas athletic department’s final year as members of the Big 12, two Longhorn programs won national championships, three finished as national runners-up, and three more finished within the final top five for nine total top-five finishes as part of UT’s third LEARFIELD Directors’ Cup in four years.

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According to a Texas release, the Longhorns qualified 19 of their 20 NCAA eligible sports for their respective NCAA Championship events. Texas was one of just three Power 5 programs along with Tennessee and Texas A&M to reach the NCAA postseason or a bowl game in football, volleyball, men’s and women’s basketball, baseball and softball. Of the Longhorns, Volunteers, and Aggies, Texas was the only one of that trio to make the four-team College Football Playoff.

Plus, Texas won 15 Big 12 championships during the 2023-24 athletic year, the most in school history. The Longhorns won conference titles in soccer (tournament), volleyball, football, women’s indoor track and field, men’s swimming and diving, women’s swimming and diving, women’s basketball (tournament), men’s tennis (regular season and tournament), women’s golf, men’s golf, softball, men’s outdoor track and field, women’s outdoor track and field, and rowing. It was also the most conference championships won by a Power 5 school in 2023-24.

That’s a lot of success, and it lead to the Longhorns earning the top award for athletic department success in 2023-24. How did Texas rack up the 1377 points needed for the program’s third Directors’ Cup? Inside Texas takes a detailed look.

How it’s totaled

From the NACDA:

  • Division I: Count 19 sports with the following breakdowns (decreased by 1, 19.1 avg.)
    – Four of which must be Baseball and Men’s Basketball, Women’s Basketball and Women’s Volleyball
    – The next highest 15 (max.) sports scored for each institution, regardless of gender, will be used in the standings

National Championships

  • Volleyball
  • Rowing

Jerritt Elliott‘s third national title at Texas and Dave O’Neill‘s second-straight NCAA title and third overall each gave Texas 100 points toward its Directors’ Cup point total.

National Runners-Up

  • Women’s Swimming and Diving
  • Men’s Tennis
  • Softball

Carol Capitani‘s program finished second behind the Virginia Cavaliers, Bruce Berque‘s men’s tennis program finished second to TCU, and Mike White‘s softball team was runners-up to Oklahoma. Each program contributed 90 points to the Longhorns’ Directors’ Cup points total.

Top-Five Finishes

  • Football
  • Women’s outdoor track and field
  • Women’s basketball

Thanks to a No. 4 finish in the USA TODAY Coaches Poll, Steve Sarkisian‘s program added 80 points to the Longhorns’ total. Edrick Floréal‘s third-place finish in women’s outdoor track netted 85 points. Vic Schaefer‘s Elite Eight appearance in women’s basketball was also a major contributor to the Longhorns’ Directors’ Cup point total, adding 73 points.

Top-10 finishes

  • Men’s cross country
  • Men’s swimming and diving
  • Soccer
  • Women’s tennis

Each of these programs made deep runs, swims, or swings in their NCAA Championships.

Top-25 finishes

  • Women’s golf
  • Men’s outdoor track and field
  • Women’s indoor track and field
  • Men’s golf
  • Men’s basketball
  • Men’s indoor track and field

Each postseason appearance matters and goes toward a Directors’ Cup point total. The fact all these programs made their postseason championships helped the Longhorns overcome the Cardinal.

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Postseason Appearances

  • Baseball

Women’s cross country was the only program that did not make its respective postseason.

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