The end of the baseball College World Series also marked the end of the 2021-21 college sports year. While football, soccer, field hockey, and all the rest of the fall sports will be here before we know it, we are now fully into the doldrums of the college sports offseason.
The end of the college sports season also means the end of the Learfield Directors Cup race. For those unaware, the Directors Cup is a competition in which athletic programs compete across all the different sports, receiving points depending on where their teams finish in the various NCAA Tournaments and Championships. The school with the most points wins. Well, another year is in the books and this year North Carolina finished sixth.
The finish confirms another high finish for Tar Heel sports, who have finished in the top ten in 22 of 27 years of the competition’s existence. The sixth place finish this year is down two spots from 2020-21, but still amongst the best placements of the past decade. UNC’s best ever performance came in the inaugural year in 1993-94, when the school won the Directors Cup. They also led the way among ACC teams, with Notre Dame (eighth overall) coming in second.
UNC’s points total this year was headlined by the women’s lacrosse national championship. Beyond that, there was the runner-up finish in men’s basketball, and top ten placements in baseball, men’s golf, both men’s and women’s tennis and women’s basketball.
The winner of this year’s Directors Cup was Texas, which led the way with national championship wins in four different sports. This is the second-straight win for the Longhorns, who had never taken it home prior to 2020-21. Stanford, who’ve now won all but three Directors Cups, came in second, with Michigan, Ohio State, and Florida rounding out the top five.
Congrats to all the Tar Heel sporting programs, many of whom have had another very good year.