Courtesy Williams Sports Information
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. – Williams College was awarded the U.S. Sports Academy Directors' Cup presented by NACDA for the academic year 2005-2006. It is the eighth straight Directors' Cup for the Ephs, whose athletic program has won 10 of the 11 Directors' Cups awarded at the Division III level.
Three NESCAC institutions finished in the top 10 of the Directors' Cup standings. Middlebury finished third with 758 points, while Tufts placed sixth with 602 points, the highest showing ever in the standings for the Jumbos. Other NESCAC institutions that were featured in the standings this year were Amherst (11th), Bowdoin (21st), Colby (31st), Wesleyan (34th), and Bates (49th). Related: 2005-06 Standings
"I am extremely proud to accept the Directors' Cup" on behalf of our student-athletes, coaching faculty, support staff and college community," said Williams Athletic Director Harry Sheehy III. "The students on our teams exhibit great work ethic, discipline and passion. I know I speak for our coaches when I say that our students are a great source of pride and inspiration for us all. I also want to thank our coaches for their work in making the athletic experience a true part of our athlete's education here at Williams." The 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 NCAA post-season events up to 18 sports -- nine women's and nine men's.
Over the 2005-2006 year, the Ephs registered points in 14 of the 18 maximum sports (eight women's teams, six men's teams). The Ephs finished with 920.50 points, finishing 130.25 points ahead of runner-up The College of New Jersey (TCNJ), which finished with 790.25.
"Obviously, we're proud of our record in the Directors' Cup, as it recognizes our excellence in athletics," said rising senior Meghan Stetson, a starter on the women's basketball team. "But maintaining Williams' high standards of excellence in all areas is something that I believe all students take seriously, I don't think that winning the Cup is every Williams athlete's ultimate goal. For me, being part of a successful team and watching our other teams succeed, is more rewarding than winning an award. Still, it's nice to say we're the best." Williams won one national championship over the 2005-2006 year, and it came in the spring as the Ephs' women's crew team won its second NCAA championship in the five years the NCAA has awarded one at the Division III level. The Ephs had seven teams finish in the top five in the nation.
Off the fields, courts and out of the pools, many Ephs achieved equal success in the classrooms. A record 202 student-athletes were honored in May at the annual Scholar-Athlete dinner. Only sophomores, juniors and seniors nominated by a coach, possessing a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.20 and who start or serve as a key reserve, are eligible for the honor.
"We celebrate excellence throughout the Williams community," Williams President Morton Owen Schapiro said. "The magnificent performance on the various playing fields is a wonderful compliment to what happens in our classrooms, laboratories, and studios and on our stages."