Mountain Lions ranked 25 in annual NCSA power rankings

Oct. 29, 2012

Jonathan Toman
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UCCS is ranked No.25 in the 2012 National Collegiate Scouting Association power rankings, which looks at all the schools in the nation in each division.

Developed 10 years ago as a tool for families of student athletes to evaluate possible institutions of higher learning, the ranking objectively evaluates schools.

The annual ranking, which is a comprehensive conglomerate of both academics and athletics, includes an average of the U.S. News & World Report academic rankings, student athlete graduation rates and the Learfield Sports Directors’ Cup standings (which determine a school’s overall athletic performance) to achieve the score.

“To get in the top 25, you have got to be pretty balanced,” said Steve Kirkham, UCCS athletic director. “It’s a good thing to have going for you.”

Many Mountain Lion programs are beginning to win consistently. “Two years ago, we were around 90-something, and last year they messed up our graduation rate,” he said. “We could be in the top 10 next year.”

UCCS is the top-ranked Division II school in the state of Colorado, one spot ahead of Colorado School of Mines. One of the biggest benefits for UCCS in the new ranking will be for recruiting.

“Recruiting is the lifeblood of college athletics, and our coaches can now have a powerful discussion with both parents and kids,” said Kirkham.

“We’re winning,” he added. “And we now have both the scholarship and salary money to retain our players and coaches.”

This fall, various sports are doing well; some are even having the best season in the history of their respective programs.

“We’ve never hosted a fall RMAC (Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference) postseason game, and we have a great shot to host three this fall,” said Kirkham.

Postseason is set to begin for several Mountain Lion teams within the next few weeks.