May. 23, 2017
LA MIRADA, Calif. --- It was a historic fall season for Biola University as all five of its fall teams made their respective National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics National Championship events in the same year for the first time in Biola Athletics history.
Those five phenomenal team performances keyed Biola's first-ever first place standing in the Learfield Sports Directors' Cup. As the second of three fall standings is released Thursday morning Biola sits 65 points ahead of Columbia College as first overall among all of the NAIA institutions.
This edition of the Directors' Cup standings features the final fall rankings of the NAIA institutions in men and women's cross country, men and women's soccer and volleyball.
Biola earned points in each of those five sports as its five teams all ended up inside of the top-25 of their respective coaches' polls.
The Eagles end the fall with 313 total points, which is 177 points more than Biola accumulated during the 2014 fall season.
Women's Cross Country led the way with its third-place national finish. Their excellent performance in the Eagles' first season under new head coach Sean Henning counted for 85 total points.
Volleyball ended the year as the No. 5 team in the nation to secure 73 total points. Men and Women's Soccer each counted as the ninth team in the NAIA to bring in 53 points a piece.
Lastly, men's cross country finished 25th to contribute 49 points. It's the first time since 2011 that men's cross country has contributed in the Directors' Cup, which will go a long way towards Biola's ability to compete for the cup later in the year.
The only sport that will be added in the third installment of the fall standings is football. Of the current top-10 teams only two sit inside the top-25 in the NAIA Football Coaches' Poll. Lindsey Wilson, which currently sits fifth in the Directors' Cup standings, is likely to finish somewhere around 15th in the final football coaches' poll and will not threaten the Eagles' top standing in the final fall Directors' Cup standings.
Three Golden State Athletic Conference institutions were inside the top-10 as Westmont ranks sixth and Vanguard sits tied with Benedictine (Kan.) in seventh.
The Learfield Sports Directors' Cup 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 12 sports – six women's and six men's.
The next NAIA fall standings will be released Wednesday, Dec. 24.
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