Florida will finish second in the 2013-14 Learfield Sports NACDA Directors' Cup for the third straight season, the school announced in a present-tense release on Monday.
The competition for the Directors' Cup isn't technically over, with Vanderbilt and Virginia still vying — see what I did there? — for a title at the 2014 College World Series, points for baseball yet to be awarded, and an official final release coming upon the conclusion of the CWS later this week.
But the Gators' second-place finish has been assured for almost two weeks.
The Gators' top-five finishes at the 2014 NCAA Outdoor Championships gave Florida enough points to move into second in last week's Directors' Cup standings release, which is inclusive of every NCAA sport contested this year except for baseball. No team was within range of moving past Florida even then: The Gators stand to add around 25 points to their total for qualifying for the 2014 NCAA Tournament, and the only team that could pass Florida with the 100 points awarded for prevailing at the College World Series was Notre Dame, which failed to make the NCAA Tournament field.
The margin of victory for the 19-time champion Cardinal — who have won the Directors' Cup in every season since placing second to North Carolina in its inaugural year of existence in 1993-94 — will be quite a bit larger than it was in 2012-13, when just 16.50 points separated the two teams, and prevented Florida from breaking Stanford's chokehold on the top spot.
It could've been a lot closer, though. After getting an unusually poor 95 points from its three fall sports, Florida roared back in the winter and spring seasons, capping its 554 points in the winter with a second consecutive national championship in gymnastics, and outscoring every team but UCLA and USC in the spring season with a 542.50-point performance punctuated by the Gators' first national title in softball.
Florida's five second-place finishes are second in Directors' Cup history to UCLA's six. Its three straight second-place finishes mark the second such streak in the competition's history, after three straight runner-up finishes by UCLA from 2005-06 to 2007-08.
And Stanford and Florida are the only two programs to have finished in the top 10 of the Division I Directors' Cup in every season of its existence.
Down years don't really happen at the #EverythingSchool.