LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kentucky finished 10th in the final 2016-17 Learfield Directors’ Cup standings, the highest finish in school history.
The Directors’ Cup measures athletic success by awarding points for each NCAA sport. Kentucky’s previous high mark was 11th in 2013-14. The Wildcats have recorded seven consecutive top-30 finishes.
“I want to congratulate our students, coaches and staff on this unprecedented top-10 finish in the Directors’ Cup, which is an important gauge of our competitive success,” athletic director Mitch Barnhart said in a statement. “I am so thankful for their dedication and the way they continually make the Commonwealth proud. This is an important step toward our goals, but we are not going to rest in our work to establish UK Athletics as one of the truly elite departments in America.”
Barnhart will receive an $80,000 bonus for Kentucky’s top-10 finish, according to his contract. A first-place finish would’ve awarded Barnhart $200,000.
Florida was the only SEC team that finished higher than Kentucky in the standings. The top-5 Directors’ Cup finishers were Stanford, Ohio State, Florida, USC and North Carolina.
Kentucky had six teams finish in the top 10 of their respective sports: rifle, women’s outdoor track and field, men’s basketball, women’s indoor track and field, softball, and baseball.