March 24, 2014
NEW ORLEANS – The Golden Gophers are currently ranked 17th in the nation for the 2013-14 U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Program of the Year award. Following the conclusion of the cross country and indoor track & field seasons, Minnesota is among the nation's top-20 programs.
The USTFCCCA Program of the Year Awards are awarded annually to the most outstanding cross country/track & field programs. The award honors the institution that has achieved the most success in each academic year (spanning the cross country, indoor track & field, and outdoor track & field seasons) based on the institution’s finish at the NCAA Championships.
To be eligible for the award, teams must qualify for each of the NCAA Championships. Scoring is based on the team’s finish at each NCAA Championship in cross country, indoor track & field, and outdoor track & field (i.e. first = one point, second = two points, etc.) with the lowest total score for all three championships combined determining the award recipient. Ties among schools split points for positions taken.
Leading the way with two thirds of the 2013-14 year in the books are the Oregon men and women in Division I, the Adams State men and women in Division II and the UW-La Crosse men and Williams women in Division III.
Oregon leads the hunt for the Terry Crawford Women’s Division I Program of the Year Award with 15 points after placing 14th at the cross country championships and winning the indoor track & field title. Following the Ducks are Stanford (18.5), Arkansas (21), Georgetown (22) and Dartmouth (23.5), respectively, to round out the top five.
Five Big Ten Conference teams are in the running for the Division I women's award, led by eighth-ranked Michigan (37.5), ninth-ranked Penn State (39) and 10th ranked Michigan State (42.5). Wisconsin is one place ahead of the Gophers with 64.5 points in 16th, and Minnesota has 72 points with a 20th-place team showing at the cross country championships and a 51st-place finish at the indoor track & field championships.
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