MEDFORD - The Tufts University varsity athletics program ranks second among NCAA Division III schools in the fall release of the Learfield Sports Directors' Cup standings.
The Jumbos accumulated 365.50 points on the NCAA performances of head coach Josh Shapiro's men's soccer team, head coach Tina Mattera's field hockey team, head coach Cora Thompson's volleyball team, head coach Kristen Morwick's women's cross country team and head coach Joel Williams' men's cross country squad.
Tufts trails only Washington University-St. Louis in the fall standings. The Bears scored 410 points during the 2016 fall season.
For Tufts, the runner-up fall ranking comes after the Jumbo program finished a best-ever fourth in the Directors' Cup for the full 2015-16 year. For the fall, the Jumbos scored in five of the eight sports included in the Directors' Cup standings.
Jumbo Men's Soccer won its second national championship in three seasons to score 100 points towards the Tufts total. Field Hockey was the national-runner up, adding 90 points to the fall score. Volleyball played into the national quarterfinals, which achieved a fifth-place point total of 73.
Women's Cross Country, the last of four Tufts teams which posted top 10 NCAA finishes this fall, scored 70.5 points for their eighth place at the NCAA championship race. The individual performances of seniors Tim Nichols and Luke O'Connor at the NCAA Men's Cross Country Championship added 32 points to the Tufts tally.
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 18 sports -- nine women's and nine men's. The first Division III winter standings will be released in mid-March.
Last year's fourth-place finish improved upon sixth-place finishes in 2005-06 and 2009-10 as the best by Tufts since the Directors' Cup began in 1995-96. It marked Tufts' fourth straight year in the top 10 and eighth overall.
The NCAA's Division III includes more than 400 schools.