HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. – With the completion of the spring seasons of league competition, ETSU’s men’s programs and Furman’s women’s programs have won the races for the Southern Conference’s all-sport trophies, each winning for the third straight year.
The Commissioner’s and Germann cups are awarded annually to the Southern Conference schools fielding the league’s best all-around men’s and women’s sports programs, respectively. Scoring is conducted on a percentage basis, with only the top seven sports for each school counting toward its season total. The SoCon sponsors 22 total sports with this year’s addition of women’s lacrosse, with the league’s three co-ed rifle teams counting toward the Commissioner’s Cup standings and the two women’s rifle teams counting toward the Germann Cup.
Each sport is worth 10 points, with each spot in the standings given equal measure relative to how many schools sponsor that particular sport. For sports that determine a regular-season champion, a two-point bonus is awarded for winning the league tournament. Each school’s total for the year is divided by 70, the maximum number of points possible when counting seven sports, to find its percentage.
After sitting second to Furman after the completion of both the fall and winter seasons, ETSU finally overtook the Paladins in the spring, finishing with 62.50 points and an .893 percentage. Samford’s baseball tournament title propelled it into the runner-up spot with 53.72 points and a .767 percentage, while Furman finished third at 53.00 points and a .757 percentage.
ETSU won the men’s tennis regular-season and tournament titles in the spring and added third-place finishes in golf and outdoor track and field. The Bucs finished second in basketball and third in indoor track and field in the winter, and in the fall, won their second straight men’s soccer regular-season title and finished second to Furman in cross country.
Samford got a big boost from its baseball team, which finished second in the regular-season standings and won the tournament to claim the two-point bonus. The Bulldogs also finished second in the outdoor track and field meet to complement a strong fall campaign that featured a second-place showing in football and a third-finish in cross country and a winter season that saw a runner-up finish in indoor track and field.
In the spring, Furman counted a third-place finish in men’s tennis and fourth-place showings in lacrosse and golf.
UNCG moved up one spot from the winter standings thanks to its men’s golf tournament win and its baseball regular-season title. The Spartans finished just behind Furman with 52.83 points and a .755 percentage. UNCG also claimed the basketball regular-season and tournament titles in the winter.
Mercer jumped five spots to fifth, buoyed by its runner-up finish in tennis. The Bears finished with a .585 percentage. Football champion Wofford was right behind them in sixth with a .573 mark.
Outdoor track and field champion Western Carolina finished seventh at .561, followed by Chattanooga (.456), The Citadel (.427) and VMI (.424).
The top three teams in the Germann Cup standings remained the same from the winter as Furman completed its wire-to-wire win. The Paladins finished with 66.42 points and a .949 percentage to run away with the all-sports race. Furman turned in a strong spring season that featured a women’s golf tournament title, tennis regular-season and tournament titles and a third-place finish in softball. Furman also claimed titles in cross country, soccer and volleyball in the fall as part of its stellar 2017-18 campaign.
Samford finished second with 57.85 points and an .826 percentage. The Bulldogs turned in runner-up finishes in outdoor track and field and tennis. Samford won the indoor track and field title in the winter and tied for first in soccer and finished second in cross country in the fall.
ETSU (54.88 points, .826) remained third, bolstered by a second-place finish in tennis and a third-place showing in outdoor track and field. The Bucs were third in cross country in the fall and finished second in volleyball, adding the two-point bonus for winning the tournament.
Mercer jumped four spots to finish fourth, highlighted by winning the inaugural women’s lacrosse tournament title. The basketball regular-season and tournament champion Bears also finished second in golf and softball to total 50.74 points and a .725 percentage.
Softball regular-season and tournament champion UNCG, which won the soccer tournament in the fall, finished fifth at .673, followed by outdoor track and field champion Western Carolina at .549. Wofford was eighth at .470, with VMI (.296) and The Citadel (.185) rounding out the standings.
The Commissioner’s Cup was inaugurated in 1970 and the Germann Cup was first awarded in 1987. The latter is named for former SoCon Commissioner Ken Germann, who served as commissioner of the Southern Conference from 1974-86 and spearheaded the effort to introduce women’s athletics to the league.
Six schools have won the Commissioner’s Cup in the 49-year history of the award, including current members ETSU (2017-18, 2016-17, 2015-16 and 1982-83) Chattanooga (2014-15 and 2004-05) and Furman (1990-91).
Five schools have won the Germann Cup in its 32-year history. Among current schools, Furman owns a league-best 16, including 12 straight from 1992-2004. Samford has won two (2014-15 and 2009-10) and Chattanooga won in 2007-08.
Commissioner’s Cup (through spring sports)
1. ETSU 0.893
2. Samford 0.767
3. Furman 0.757
4. UNCG 0.755
5. Mercer 0.585
6. Wofford 0.573
7. Western Carolina 0.561
8. Chattanooga 0.456
9. The Citadel 0.427
10. VMI 0.424
Germann Cup (through spring sports)
1. Furman 0.949
2. Samford 0.826
3. ETSU 0.784
4. Mercer 0.725
5. UNCG 0.673
6. Chattanooga 0.624
7. Western Carolina 0.549
8. Wofford 0.470
9. VMI 0.296
10. The Citadel 0.185