Gophers Rank No. 25 to Open 2014 Season
Aug. 27, 2014
NEW ORLEANS – The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) has released its 2014 USTFCCCA Division I Women's Cross County Preseason National Poll and Preseason Regional Team Rankings. Minnesota is tied for No. 25 in the nation and ranks third in the Midwest region to kick off the 2014 season.
No. 1 Michigan (342 points), No. 2 Oregon (330), No. 3 Florida State (316), No. 4 Stanford (314) and No. 5 Georgetown (311) make up the national top five while defending national champion Providence lands 18th. The No. 25 Gophers finished 20th at the 2013 NCAA national championship.
Five Big Ten Conference teams are nationally ranked to start the season as No. 6 Michigan State, No. 16 Wisconsin, No. 25 Minnesota and No. 29 Penn State join top-ranked Michigan in the preseason top 30.
The Gophers are ranked third in the Midwest region behind reigning regional champion Iowa State and second-ranked Oklahoma State. Minnesota was the runner-up at the 2013 Midwest Regional and returns 2013 all-region honoree Becca Dyson. The Gophers also return two-time all-region honoree Ashlie Decker, who redshirted the 2013 season.
Defending regional champions who start the season ranked No. 1 in their regions include Michigan (Great Lakes), Colorado (Mountain), Arkansas (South Central), Virginia (Southeast), Iowa State (Midwest), and Florida State (South).
USTFCCCA regional cross country rankings are determined subjectively by a single member coach in each respective region. The regional representative is tasked with weighing returning team strength with current-season results in determining predicted team finishes at the NCAA regional championships.
Minnesota opens the 2014 cross country season with its annual Intrasquad Meet at Les Bolstad Golf Course at 7:30 p.m. this Friday; the season officially begins with the Oz Memorial at Les Bolstad Course on Friday, Sept. 5.
2014 USTFCCCA Midwest Regional Rankings
2014 USTFCCCA Preseason National Poll
Other teams receiving votes: Boise State 22, Baylor 17, Cornell 16, Utah 15, Duke 11, Princeton 9, Texas A&M 8, Toledo 7, Alabama 5, Harvard 1, Northern Arizona 1.