ASU Wins Commissioner's Cup for first time ever
MONTGOMERY – The Alabama State University athletics program won the 2013-14 Commissioner’s Cup Award, symbolic of the best all-around sports program in the Southwestern Athletic Conference.
It’s the first time Alabama State has won the Commissioner’s Cup, as ASU swept all three conference awards for the first time ever. For the second straight year, the Lady Hornets won the women’s all-sports trophy, while the Hornets won the men’s all-sports trophy for the first time in school history. Overall, Alabama State finished first or second in the SWAC in 13 of 18 sports this season.
For the third straight year, the women’s track program won the “Triple Crown,” earning SWAC championships in cross country, indoor track and outdoor track. It was the third straight league title in cross country, the sixth consecutive title in indoor track, and the fifth consecutive outdoor track championship.
For the second straight year, both the women's and men's golf programs won SWAC Championships this spring, earning NCAA Tournament appearances. The women's team earned its second straight SWAC title and third in four years, while the men's team won its third consecutive league title.
Alabama State volleyball won its first Eastern Division championship and first SWAC Championship in school history, qualifying for the NCAA Tournament for the first time in setting a program record for wins.
The success of the athletics department occurred not only in competition but in the classroom as well. Nearly 200 Alabama State student-athletes had cumulative or semester 3.0 GPAs in the fall of 2013, with 40 student-athletes graduating in the past academic year.
The women's track triple crown, volleyball and golf titles highlighted the women's team accomplishments. The ASU bowling team, nationally ranked for most of the year, won the SWAC’s regular season title and finished second overall, both firsts in the program’s history. The women’s soccer team won the conference Eastern Division title and finished second overall, again firsts in the history of the program.
The SWAC title in golf highlighted the men's team accomplishments. The men’s cross country, indoor track, basketball, tennis, and baseball teams each finished with at least a share of second place this season. For the first time ever, men’s basketball was selected to play in the CollegeInsider.com postseason tournament. For the second straight year, the baseball program set a school record for wins, won the division title for the first time since 1994, and its second-place finish was the highest in school history.
The commissioner’s cup is named the James Frank Award for the former long-time SWAC Commissioner and NCAA President. The women's award, the Barbara Jacket/Sadie Magee Trophy, was named for two conference pioneers. Jacket was a long-time track coach at Prairie View and is in the U.S. Track and Field Hall of Fame. Magee is the winningest coach in Jackson State women's basketball history. The C.D. Henry Award, presented to the top men's program in the conference, is named for the former executive officer of the SWAC and the first African American to serve as assistant commissioner of any conference when he joined the Big 10 Conference in 1974.
(Courtesy: ASU Athletics)