Busy Weekend Leads to Some Huge Changes in DI Women’s Poll

By Tyler Mayforth, USTFCCCA

October 20, 2015   

NEW ORLEANS – Busy doesn’t even begin to describe this past weekend in NCAA Division I Women’s Cross Country. Every team that was ranked in the previous National Coaches’ Poll was in action, including those teams who also received votes, but didn’t earn enough points to be in the top-30.

What did that mean for this week’s poll when it was released Tuesday afternoon by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA)?

Hint: Lots and lots of movement.

National PDFs: Top 30 Summary | Week-by-Week 2015 | Week-by-Week All Time
Regional Rankings: Summary | Men’s Recap | Women’s Recap
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NCAA Division I National Coaches Poll Top 5 – Women

1)New Mexico) 2)Oregon) 3)Colorado 4)Arkansas 5)Stanford)
New Mexico Michigan Colorado Arkansas Oregon
View Complete Women’s National Coaches Poll

Before there are any heart attacks, New Mexico is still the unanimous No. 1. How could the Lobos not be after steamrolling the field at the prestigious Wisconsin adidas Invitational this past Friday? New Mexico scored 32 points – nearly six times fewer than the second-place team – as its top-5 runners went 4-5-6-7-10.

While Michigan wasn’t as dominant at the Pre-National Invitational as the Lobos were in Madison, Wisconsin, the now-No. 2 Wolverines looked strong in their own right. Michigan won their third consecutive team title and knocked off four top-10 teams in the process – former No. 2 Colorado (now No. 3), former No. 4 Oregon (now No. 5), former No. 7 Georgetown (now No. 18) and former No. 9 Stanford (now No. 10).

So what about those other 19 ranked teams that ran into the buzz saw known as the Lobos at the adidas Invitational? Let’s not forget about that septet that competed alongside Michigan in Louisville, Kentucky either.

Going by last week’s rankings, there were three teams that put themselves in the national conversation last Friday in Madison, Wisconsin – Arkansas, Virginia and North Carolina State.

The young Razorbacks, led by senior Dominique Scott’s third-place showing and a breakthrough performance by freshman Devin Scott (18th), finished second behind New Mexico. Arkansas jumped from No. 11 to No. 4 in this week’s poll.

Behind the Razorbacks were the Cavaliers, who put three runners in the top-30 (Cleo Boyd, Iona Lake, Megan Rebholz), one of just two teams to do that (Bet you can guess the other). Virginia surged 10 spots in this week’s poll, going from No. 17 to No. 7. This is the Cavaliers’ first time ranked in the top-8 in program history.

And the Wolfpack finished fourth despite a less-than-stellar race by two-time National Athlete of the Week Ryen Frazier (38th). Samantha George (13th) was the low stick for NC State. The Wolfpack are now ranked No. 8, which marks their first time in the top-10 since 2006.

Just like that trio, Mississippi State pulled off a bit of an upset of its own this past weekend – but at the Pre-National Invitational. The Bulldogs finished fifth and were just three points behind the Cardinal in fourth. Mississippi State rocketed from receiving votes to No. 13, the first time it has ever been ranked in program history.

The Bulldogs are one of five teams jumping into the poll after dancing on the outside for a while. Mississippi State is joined on the dance floor by No. 19 Utah, No. 25 Columbia, No. 27 Weber State and No. 30 Purdue. This is the first time that the Utes and Boilermakers have been ranked in the National Coaches’ Poll.

After the busy weekend, most – if not, all – of these teams will take off in preparation for their conference championship meet in two weeks. Then two weeks after that, they’ll all converge for regionals and soon after, the NCAA Division I Cross Country Championships at E.P. “Tom” Sawyer Park.

USTFCCCA NCAA Division I

Women’s Cross Country National Coaches’ Poll

2015 Week #5 — October 20

next poll: November 3
Rank Institution (FPV) Points Record Region Conference Cross Country Coach (Yr*)
Last Week
1 New Mexico (12) 360 55-0 Mountain Mountain West Joe Franklin (9th)
1
2 Michigan 338 64-0 Great Lakes Big Ten Mike McGuire (24th)
5
3 Colorado 328 45-1 Mountain Pac-12 Mark Wetmore (21st)
2
4 Arkansas 324 49-1 South Central SEC Lance Harter (26th)
11
5 Oregon 307 53-2 West Pac-12 Robert Johnson (4th)
4
6 Providence 295 54-4 Northeast Big East Ray Treacy (32nd)
3
7 Virginia 290 47-2 Southeast ACC Todd Morgan (4th)
17
8 NC State 274 51-4 Southeast ACC Laurie Henes (10th)
12
9 Boise State 266 54-5 West Mountain West Corey Ihmels (3rd)
6
10 Stanford 250 60-5 West Pac-12 Chris Miltenberg (4th)
9
11 Iowa State 249 55-24 Midwest Big 12 Andrea Grove-McDonough (3rd)
8
12 Washington 231 38-8 West Pac-12 Greg Metcalf (14th)
10
13 Mississippi State 203 53-5 South SEC Houston Franks (7th)
RV
14 BYU 198 35-11 Mountain West Coast Patrick Shane (34th)
22
15 Penn State 193 44-11 Mid-Atlantic Big Ten John Gondak (2nd)
16
16 Syracuse 180 47-11 Northeast ACC Chris Fox (11th)
15
17 Notre Dame 162 42-13 Great Lakes ACC Matt Sparks (2nd)
18
18 Georgetown 151 59-8 Mid-Atlantic Big East Michael Smith (4th)
7
19 Utah 138 55-9 Mountain Pac-12 Kyle Kepler (11th)
RV
20 Princeton 133 34-12 Mid-Atlantic Ivy Pete Farrell (38th)
25
21 Michigan State 126 45-14 Great Lakes Big Ten Walt Drenth (12th)
13
22 Minnesota 98 60-19 Midwest Big Ten Sarah Hopkins (3rd)
23
23 Oklahoma State 95 29-0 Midwest Big 12 Dave Smith (7th)
28
24 William and Mary 87 26-20 Southeast Colonial Natalie Hall (2nd)
23
25 Columbia 63 37-20 Northeast Ivy Dan Ireland (2nd)
RV
26 Vanderbilt 53 35-20 South SEC Steve Keith (10th)
21
27 Weber State 51 58-10 Mountain Big Sky Paul Pilkington (9th)
RV
28 Villanova 30 43-12 Mid-Atlantic Big East Gina Procaccio (16th)
26
29 North Carolina 27 27-19 Southeast ACC Mark VanAlstyne (4th)
19
30 Purdue 22 71-16 Great Lakes Big Ten Rolando Greene (4th)
RV
Others Receiving Votes: California 21, Dartmouth 12, Alabama 9, Lipscomb 8, Wisconsin 3, Baylor 2, Harvard 2, Penn 1
Dropped Out: No. 14 Wisconsin, No. 20 West Virginia, No. 27 Texas, No. 29 Cornell, No. 30 Alabama
Win-loss record reflective of results in varsity competition versus DI opponents starting September 25
(* year as effective coach of that team in women’s cross country)