The University of Toledo was awarded with the Jacoby Trophy as the top women’s athletic program in the Mid-American Conference at the MAC Honors Dinner in Cleveland Thursday night.The Rockets earned the honor for the first time in the 30-year history of this prestigious award. Toledo’s previous best finish was fourth place in each of the past three seasons.
Kent State won the Reese Trophy in men’s competition.
For the 2011-12 academic year, Rocket women’s sports programs won MAC Championships in cross country, soccer, and swimming and diving. Toledo also claimed a share of its third consecutive MAC West Division crown in women’s basketball, and came in second place in both indoor and outdoor track and field.
“This is a tremendous milestone for our program,” said UT Vice President and Athletic Director Mike O’Brien. “The student-athletes and coaches in our women’s programs have truly earned their recognition as the best in the Mid-American Conference. We are extremely proud of everything they have accomplished and congratulate them for this historic achievement.”
Toledo won the award thanks to outstanding performances by its perennially strong programs, as well as solid showings from its steadily improving programs.
In cross country, Toledo’s MAC Championship was the program’s fourth title. The Rockets placed an impressive 21st finish at the NCAA Championships, a new high in program and MAC history. In women’s soccer, the Rockets captured their league-record fourth championship in program history. Toledo also earned its second MAC Women’s Swimming and Diving Championship in the past three years. Women’s basketball finished with a 24-10 record (13-3 MAC) and earned its third straight appearance in the Postseason WNIT Tournament, advancing to the Elite Eight.
In track and field, the Rockets finished the MAC Outdoor Championship with a program-best second-place finish with 132 points, which was a carbon copy of the MAC Indoor Championship second-place finish. UT women’s golf finished third at the MAC Championship for its second top-three showing in the last three years. In softball, the Rockets closed the season with an 8-12 record in league play, its most conference wins and first MAC Tournament appearance since 1997.
For the Reese and Jacoby trophies, points are awarded based on each school’s finish, with the overall total divided by the number of sports sponsored by each school. An institution may count either indoor track and field or outdoor track and field, but not both.
The women’s trophy is named for former MAC Commissioner Fred Jacoby. He was the MAC commissioner from 1971 to 1982 and is credited with incorporating women’s athletics into the conference structure.