May 25, 2004
In what has been a breakthrough year for the University of Tennessee Women's Athletics Department, the Lady Vols were announced as the Southeastern Conference women's all-sports winner by the New York Times Regional Newspaper Group on Tuesday. UT totaled 80.50 points for a 10.06 average (in eight sports), while Florida had 84 points and a 9.33 average (in nine sports), ending a four-year streak at No. 1 for the Gators. Overall, the Lady Vols claimed league titles in basketball, cross country and soccer during the 2003-04 academic year and won the Eastern Division title in softball. A remarkable 10 of 11 sports sponsored by the department advanced to their respective NCAA events.
"To win this championship is indeed an honor since I believe the SEC is the best conference in America for women's athletics," said Athletics Director Joan Cronan, now in her 21st year. "A lot of credit should go to the University of Tennessee for the outstanding support it provides for our department. We are also fortunate to have an outstanding group of student-athletes, as well as an excellent coaching staff regarded as among the best in the country. The administrators and support staff within the Lady Vol program, who day-in and day-out provide the best services for the student-athletes and coaches, have played an integral role in our success."
The New York Times Regional Newspaper Group, which includes 14 newspapers throughout the Southeastern United States, awards trophies to the league school that captures each of the three all-sports titles. A first-place SEC finish is worth 12 points, second is given 11 points, and so on. A school's point total is divided by the number of sports it fields to arrive at the average. The New York Times Regional Newspaper Group took over coordination of the SEC All-Sports rankings in 1994-95. Prior to that, the league office tabulated the SEC All-Sports totals.
For the 13th consecutive year, the University of Florida collected the SEC all-sports title, finishing first in the men's standings and second in the women's. The Gators compiled 154 total points in 16 sports for a 9.63 average to edge Georgia (9.47) for the overall title.
In the men's standings, the Gators totaled 70 points for a 10.00 average, the second-highest average ever and only the third time a men's program has finished with a 10.00 or better. Georgia finished second with 68 points and a 9.71 average, while LSU, which won the SEC title in football, took third with an average of 8.00. Tennessee's men earned 49.50 points to earn a fourth-place showing with an average of 7.07.
The SEC all-sports trophy has been awarded since the 1973-74 academic year. The SEC tabulated the all-sports totals until 1994-95, when the New York Times Regional Newspaper Group took over the coordination of the standings and the awards. Florida has now won the overall title 14 times.
|SEC ALL-SPORTS STANDINGS - WOMEN|
|SEC ALL-SPORTS STANDINGS - MEN|
|SEC ALL-SPORTS STANDINGS - OVERALL|