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April 7, 2011
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa.; - Penn State's winter sports teams are 8 of 8 in competing in their respective NCAA Championships, keeping the Nittany Lions firmly in the Top 5 in the latest Learfield Sports Directors' Cup standings.
Penn State is No. 3 in the second winter Directors' Cup compilation, which adds results from the NCAA Men's and Women's Basketball Championships, the NCAA Fencing and men's Swimming and Diving Championships.
Penn State was the NCAA fencing runner-up after winning the last two national titles. The Lady Lion basketball team beat Dayton and lost a thriller to 10th-ranked and No. 3 seed DePaul, 75-73, in the NCAA Tournament. The Nittany Lion basketball team dropped its NCAA Tournament opener to No. 7 seed Temple, 66-64, on a buzzer-beater in an electric game that featured 20 lead changes.
Penn State also will earn Learfield Sports Directors' Cup points in men's gymnastics and women's gymnastics when the final winter standings are announced April 21. Both NCAA gymnastics championships are April 15-16.
The Nittany Lions have accumulated 740.75 Directors' Cup points thus far during another highly-successful athletic year. Stanford leads with 902 points and is followed by Ohio State (772.0), Penn State, North Carolina (717) and Florida State (670.5). Duke, Wisconsin, Texas, Texas A&M and California round out the Top 10.
Earlier this winter, Penn State won its first NCAA Wrestling Championship since 1953 to garner 100 Directors' Cup points. The women's swimming and diving team and men's and women's indoor track and field teams also competed in their respective NCAA Championships to help boost Penn State's Directors' Cup total.
Penn State has finished in the Top 25 in each of the previous 17 Directors' Cup competitions. The Nittany Lions are one of only 10 programs nationwide that has finished in the Top 25 in every ranking joining Arizona State, Florida, Michigan, North Carolina, Ohio State, Southern California, Stanford, Texas, and UCLA.
The Learfield Sports Directors' Cup standings are unveiled following the fall, winter and spring seasons. The award was 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.