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Liberty First to Win 5 Straight Sasser Cups

June 1, 2012
|  Lynchburg, Va.
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(L-R): Liberty Associate Athletics Director Kevin Keys, Senior Associate Athletics Director Mickey Guridy, President/Chancellor Jerry Falwell, Jr., Associate Athletics Director Meredith Eaker, NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative Dr. Bill Gribbin and Big South Commissioner Kyle B. Kallander pose with the 2011-12 Big South Sasser Cup Trophy.

Final 2011-12 Sasser Cup Standings

For the unprecedented fifth consecutive year, the Liberty University Athletics Department has claimed the Big South Conference's George F. "Buddy" Sasser Cup for the 2011-12 athletic season. It was the Flames' 10th Sasser Cup overall, which is also a new Big South record.

The Sasser Cup trophy was presented to President/Chancellor Jerry Falwell, Jr., Senior Associate Athletics Director – Internal Operations Mickey Guridy, Associate Athletics Director – Senior Woman Administrator Meredith Eaker, Associate Athletics Director – External Operations Kevin Keys and NCAA Faculty Athletics Representative Dr. Bill Gribbin. The announcement was made Thursday evening at the Big South Conference's annual Spring Meetings Awards and Hall of Fame Dinner at the Westin Resort Hotel on Hilton Head Island, S.C.

Liberty finished with an average of 12.59 points (214 points in 17 sports), earning its fifth straight Sasser Cup by an average of 1.31 points over Coastal Carolina (11.28 average – 191.75 points in 17 sports). The Flames become the first Big South athletics department ever to win five Sasser Cup titles in a row. Coastal Carolina has captured four straight Sasser Cup titles twice (1988-91 and 2004-07).

Additionally, it was Liberty's 10th Sasser Cup title in the last 15 athletics seasons. That is the most Sasser Cup crowns ever earned by a Big South institution, one more than Coastal Carolina's nine Sasser Cups.

For just the second time in department history, Liberty also swept the Big South Men's All-Sports Trophy and Women's All-Sports Trophy. The Flames edged Coastal Carolina in the men's standings, 12.44 to 12.22, for their first Men's All-Sports Trophy since 2008-09 and fifth overall.

On the women's side, Liberty's margin of victory over the Chanticleers was more than two points (12.75-10.44), as the Lady Flames won their third straight Women's All-Sports Trophy and fourth in the last five years. The Flames' previous sweep of the Sasser Cup, Men's All-Sports Trophy and Women's All-Sports Trophy happened in 2007-08.

Liberty captured 10 Big South championships in 2011-12, including two regular-season titles and eight tournament crowns. The Flames won the regular-season title in women's basketball and shared the regular-season crown in volleyball, while claiming the conference tournament championship in men's cross country, men's soccer, volleyball, men's and women's indoor track & field, women's basketball, men's golf and men's outdoor track & field.

In total, 12 of the 17 Big South athletics programs Liberty sponsors finished first or second in either the Big South regular-season standings or at their Big South Championship event. The list also includes women's cross country (second place), football (second place), women's outdoor track & field (second place) and baseball (Big South Championship runner-up).

The Sasser Cup trophy, named for former Big South Commissioner Buddy Sasser, is awarded to the Big South member institution with the most successful year athletically based on an average points system. Points are awarded based on both regular-season and tournament finishes in each of the league's 18 championships, based on the number of teams participating in the regular-season and tournament, respectively.

A school must be eligible to participate in a specific sport championship to receive Sasser Cup points in the sport. There is a weighted factor of 1.5 for those sports which only participate in regular-season play (football) or a tournament (cross country, track and golf), but not both.  Teams tied in regular-season or tournament play split the points earned.

2011-12 Sasser Cup Standings
1) Liberty – 12.59

2) Coastal Carolina – 11.28
3) High Point – 9.29
4) Campbell – 9.22
5) Charleston Southern – 8.81
6) Radford – 8.63
7) Winthrop – 8.24
T8) UNC Asheville – 6.82
T8) Gardner-Webb – 6.82
10) VMI – 5.93
11) Presbyterian College – 4.63

2011-12 Women's All-Sports Award
1) Liberty – 12.75

2) Coastal Carolina – 10.44
3) Winthrop – 9.61
4) Campbell – 9.47
5) Charleston Southern – 9.39
6) High Point – 9.07
7) Radford – 8.89
8) Gardner-Webb – 7.61
9) UNC Asheville – 6.29
10) Presbyterian College – 4.20
11) VMI – 4.19

2011-12 Men's All-Sports Award
1) Liberty – 12.44

2) Coastal Carolina – 12.22
3) High Point – 9.50
4) Campbell – 8.94
5) Radford – 8.34
6) Charleston Southern – 8.07
7) UNC Asheville – 7.36
8) VMI – 6.93
9) Winthrop – 6.69
10) Gardner-Webb – 6.03
11) Presbyterian College – 5.05

Annual Sasser Cup Champions
1985-86 – Winthrop
1986-87 – Winthrop
1987-88 – Coastal Carolina
1988-89 – Coastal Carolina
1989-90 – Coastal Carolina
1990-91 – Coastal Carolina
1991-92 – Campbell
1992-93 – Campbell
1993-94 – Campbell
1994-95 – UNC Greensboro
1995-96 – UNC Greensboro
1996-97 – UNC Greensboro
1997-98 – Liberty
1998-99 – Liberty
1999-00 – Liberty

2000-01 – Coastal Carolina
2001-02 – Liberty
2002-03 – Liberty

2003-04 – Coastal Carolina
2004-05 – Coastal Carolina
2005-06 – Coastal Carolina
2006-07 – Coastal Carolina
2007-08 – Liberty
2008-09 – Liberty
2009-10 – Liberty
2010-11 – Liberty
2011-12 – Liberty

Women's All-Sports Award
2003-04 – Coastal Carolina
2004-05 – Coastal Carolina
2005-06 – Coastal Carolina
2006-07 – Coastal Carolina
2007-08 – Liberty
2008-09 – Coastal Carolina
2009-10 – Liberty
2010-11 – Liberty
2011-12 – Liberty

Men's All-Sports Award
2003-04 – Liberty
2004-05 – Liberty

2005-06 – Coastal Carolina
2006-07 – Winthrop
2007-08 – Liberty
2008-09 – Liberty

2009-10 – Coastal Carolina
2010-11 – Coastal Carolina
2011-12 – Liberty