UW-La Crosse Men Win Al Carius DIII Program of the Year
NEW ORLEANS – The UW-La Crosse men have claimed the Al Carius Division III Men’s Program of the Year Award following a clean sweep of the division’s NCAA track & field team titles between the indoor and outdoor seasons.
The USTFCCCA Program of the Year Award is awarded annually to the most outstanding cross country/track & field programs in each of the NCAA’s three divisions and for each gender. The award honors the institution that has achieved the most success in each academic year — spanning the cross country, indoor track & field and outdoor track & field seasons — based on the institution’s finish at the NCAA Championships.
In order to be eligible for the award, teams must qualify for each of the NCAA Championships. Scoring is based on the team’s finish at each NCAA Championship in cross country, indoor track & field, and outdoor track & field (i.e. 1st = 1 point, 2nd = 2 points, 31st = 31 points) with the lowest total score for all three championships combined determining the award recipient. Ties among schools split points for positions taken.
UW-La Crosse’s Al Carius Men’s Program of the Year Award for the 2012-13 academic year marks the program’s first Program of the Year award on either the men’s or women’s side. The previous highest finish for the Eagles men in the standings was runner-up in both 2008-09 and 2009-10, along with a third-place showing last year.
The Eagles swept both the indoor and outdoor NCAA titles — claiming the outdoor crown in a narrow 66-64 victory over in-state rival UW-Eau Claire — and finished fourth at the DIII Cross Country Championships for a total score of six points.
Finishing runners-up were the Cardinals of North Central (Ill.), snapping a three-year streak of claiming the award named after their head coach, Al Carius. After claiming the cross country title in the fall, the Cardinals finished eighth at the NCAA DIII Indoor Championships and fifth outdoors for a total of 14 points.
Finishing just one point behind North Central with 15 points is UW-Eau Claire, which makes its first appearance in the final standings’ top three in program history. The Blugolds were 10th in cross country, third indoors and runners-up outdoors this past weekend.
The Al Carius Program of the Year Award is named after USTFCCCA Hall of Famer and long-time North Central College head coach Al Carius. Carius is in his 47th year of service at North Central, still as head coach of the Cardinals’ cross country squad, and has won 23 NCAA Division III National Championships. Carius’ program last won a “triple crown” of NCAA titles during the 2009-2010 academic year.
2011-2012: North Central (Ill.) (1st), UW-Oshkosh (2nd), UW-La Crosse (3rd)
2010-2011: North Central (Ill.) (1st), Washington (Mo.) (2nd), UW-Oshkosh (3rd)
2009-2010: North Central (Ill.) (1st), UW-La Crosse (2nd), Amherst (3rd)
2008-2009: UW-Oshkosh (1st), UW-La Crosse (2nd), UW-Stevens Point (3rd)