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 second 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.
With its second straight win, ETSU has collected three Commissioner's Cups overall, with its first coming in 1982-83. Furman's second consecutive Germann Cup win extends its league record to 15, three of which have come in the last four seasons.
Scoring is conducted on a percentage basis, with only the top seven sports for each school counting toward its season total. The SoCon sponsors 21 total sports, 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.
ETSU, which also led the men's race after the fall and winter seasons, pulled away in the spring with championships in golf and tennis. The Bucs swept the regular-season and tournament titles in tennis and won the golf championship for the third straight year since rejoining the league in 2014-15.
The Bucs also earned a share of the men's basketball regular-season championship and won the basketball tournament to complement their regular-season men's soccer title this academic year. ETSU won the Commissioner's Cup with 64.75 total points for a .925 percentage, the highest men's score since the switch to the current format in 2014-15.
Commissioner's Cup runner-up Furman finished with 54.97 total points for a .785 percentage. The Paladins, who won the cross country championship in the fall and a share of the men's basketball title in the winter, added a share of its first-ever lacrosse title in the spring. Furman also finished second in tennis and tied for third in baseball.
Samford (.666) and Mercer (.629) finished third and fourth, respectively, each moving up three spots from the winter standings. The Bulldogs posted a runner-up finish in outdoor track and field, while the Bears won the baseball regular season and finished third in tennis.
Wofford, which finished third at the golf championship in the spring, dropped two spots from the winter standings to fifth with a .625 percentage, followed by baseball tournament champion UNCG, which finished second at the men's golf championship, tied for third in the baseball regular season and amassed a .619 mark.
The Spartans were followed by Western Carolina, which captured the outdoor track and field title and finished second in the baseball regular season. The Catamounts' total of 42.06 points was good for a .601 percentage.
UNCG and Western Carolina also jumped three spots each from the winter standings.
The Citadel, which finished third at the outdoor track and field championship, was eighth at .536, followed by Chattanooga (.526) and VMI (.336).
In the race for the Germann Cup, Furman jumped three spots from the winter standings on the strength of a dominant spring. The Paladins finished no worse than third in any of the spring sports, winning the women's tennis regular-season and tournament titles, the golf championship and a share of the softball regular-season crown. The Paladins finished third at the outdoor track and field championship, complementing their cross country title from the fall, and finished with 63.45 total points for a .906 percentage.
Fall and winter Germann Cup leader Samford slipped to second place for its second straight runner-up finish to Furman. The Bulldogs won the outdoor track and field championship and were close behind Furman with 61.08 Germann Cup points, finishing with an .873 percentage. Samford's women also won the indoor track and field title, the soccer regular-season and tournament championships and the volleyball tournament and finished second in cross country.
ETSU finished with 60.45 points and an .864 percentage after a solid spring that included winning the softball tournament and posting a runner-up finish in the women's tennis regular season and a third-place showing in softball. The Bucs also won the volleyball regular-season title and were runners-up to Samford in women's soccer.
Women's golf runner-up Chattanooga finished fourth in the Germann Cup standings with a .716 percentage. The Mocs shared the women's basketball regular-season title and won their record fifth straight tournament title.
UNCG won a share of its first-ever softball regular-season title to highlight its spring and finished fifth in the Germann Cup standings with a .630 percentage. The Spartans were also the volleyball regular-season runners-up.
Mercer finished sixth at .607, followed by outdoor track and field runner-up Western Carolina at .475. Wofford was eighth at .411, with VMI (.329) and The Citadel (.169) 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 48-year history of the award, including current members ETSU (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 31-year history. Among current schools, Furman owns a league-best 15, 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 - final)
1. ETSU .925
2. Furman .785
3. Samford .666
4. Mercer .629
5. Wofford .625
6. UNCG .619
7. Western Carolina .601
8. The Citadel .536
9. Chattanooga .526
10. VMI .336
Germann Cup (through spring sports - final)
1. Furman .906
2. Samford .873
3. ETSU .864
4. Chattanooga .716
5. UNCG .630
6. Mercer .607
7. Western Carolina .475
8. Wofford .411
9. VMI .329
10. The Citadel .169