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Tennessee Athletics Posts Best Ever Directors’ Cup Finish

Josh Heupel Tony Vitello
Tennessee football head coach Josh Heupel (left) and Tennessee baseball head coach Tony Vitello (right). Photo via Tennessee Athletics.

Tennessee athletics finished sixth in the 2022-23 LEARFIELD Directors’ Cup Race— its best ever finish in the competition.

The Vols and Lady Vols combined for the second highest finish in the SEC with only Stanford, Texas, Ohio State, Virginia and Florida ranking ahead of them in the competition.

Tennessee made a late move in the year long quest for the nation’s best athletic department. UT jumped from No. 10 to No. 6 in the final two weeks of the competition thanks to Vol baseball’s run to the College World Series.

“Competitive excellence is a major priority in Rise Glorious, our comprehensive five-year strategic plan, and to record our best LEARFIELD Directors’ Cup finish ever is an incredible achievement,” Tennessee Director of Athletics Danny White said in a statement. “It’s important to us to cultivate a championship culture across all 20 of our sports, and this finish is a prime example of that. Congratulations to our student-athletes, coaches and staff on this record finish. Buckle up Vol Nation, we’re just getting started, and it’s going to be one heck of a ride!”

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As White alluded to, it was a true team effort in Tennessee’s highest ever Directors’ Cup finish. Nineteen different teams recorded at least 25 of the Tennessee’s 1,078.75 total points this year.

Softball led the way totaling 83 points with baseball not far behind with 78 points. Football recorded 73.5 points, just ahead of men’s swim and dive (72), women’s indoor track and field (70.5) and women’s swim and dive (70.5).

Men’s and women’s basketball as well as men’s and women’s tennis all totaled 64 points for Tennessee with the programs’ runs to the Sweet 16 of the NCAA Tournament.

Tennessee athletics has been on a slow rise for each of the last three seasons in the Directors’ Cup, finishing 26th in the 2020-21 school year and 13th in the 2021-22 school year. The Vols and Lady Vols previous high finish in the Directors’ Cup was seventh during the 2006-07 school year.

Tennessee also claimed its second straight SEC All-Sports Title this school year becoming the first ever university to top the men’s and women’s standings in the same season.

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