Defending Men’s Champ Colorado Mines Starts 2016 Atop DII Preseason Poll

Defending Men’s Champ Colorado Mines Starts 2016 Atop DII Preseason Poll

NEW ORLEANS – After breaking through for their first-ever NCAA Division II Men’s Cross Country national title last November, can Colorado Mines make it two-in-a-row in 2016?

The Orediggers will at least be starting the year on the right track, as they were voted the team to beat in Wednesday’s preseason edition of the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) National Coaches’ Poll.

National PDFs: Top 25 Summary | Week-by-Week 2016 | Week-by-Week All-Time
Regional Rankings PDFs: Regional Rankings Summary | Rankings Recap

Division II XC Polls/Rankings Central | WOMEN’S PRESEASON POLL

NCAA Division II National Coaches’ Poll Top 5 – Men

1)Colorado Mines 2)Grand Valley State 3)Adams State 4)Alaska Anchorage 5)Chico State
Colorado Mines GVSU Adams State Alaska Anchorage Chico State
View Complete Men’s National Coaches’ Poll

Mines earned five of the eight first-place votes in the poll, while No. 2 Grand Valley State claimed the remaining three. The Orediggers’ RMAC rival Adams State checked in at No. 3, followed by No. 4 Alaska Anchorage and No. 5 Chico State.

All of these teams finished top six a year ago, and appear in the preseason top-five with good reason: all five of those teams return at least four scorers from their 2015 NCAA Championship squads.

Though Colorado Mines loses last year’s top runner Marty Andrie, the Orediggers return their remaining four scorers from the squad that topped Adams State, 100-127. That includes a trio of All-Americans in Nathanael Williams, Dan Mahoney and Grant Colligan.

GVSU may have finished fourth a year ago in Joplin, Missouri, but the Lakers also bring back tremendous depth. Fifth-place Zach Panning is back for his sophomore season leading a group of four returning scorers from last season.

Coming in at No. 3, Adams State had its streak of seven-consecutive years as the preseason favorite snapped. This is the lowest the Grizzlies – who won five national titles during that aforementioned run – have been in the preseason since a No. 5 rank to start 2002.

But with four returning finishers who finished 51st or better at NCAAs last year – including sixth-place Sydney Gidabuday – the Grizzlies cannot be discounted from the national title conversation.

No. 4 Alaska Anchorage also returns four of its five scorers from last season’s third-place squad, including third-place finisher Henry Cheseto.

With nearly its entire squad in-tact from last year’s sixth-place effort, No. 5 Chico State hopes to build on last year’s performance. The Wildcats will once again be led by All-Americans William Reyes, Steven Martinez and Kyle Medina.

Shippensburg checked in at No. 6 after finishing fifth a year ago.

Rounding out the top 10 were No. 7 Augustana (S.D.), No. 8 Southern Indiana, No. 9 Cal Poly Pomona and No. 10 Western State.

Western State is projected to finish much higher than its 19th-place finish from a year ago. The same goes for No. 11 American International, which was 17th last season.

No. 13 Lewis is the highest-ranked team that did not compete at last season’s NCAA Championships. The Flyers are joined on that list by No. 18 CSU-Pueblo, No. 21 Saginaw Valley State and No. 22 Western Washington.

Not every team can trend upwards, though. No. 15 UW-Parkside slipped from its eighth-place finish last November, as did No. 17 Lock Haven from 11th and No. 23 Southwest Baptist from 13th.

Led by Mines, Adams State and Western State, the RMAC led all conferences with four top-25 representatives. Next up were the GLIAC, GLVC and GNAC with three each.

 

USTFCCCA NCAA Division II

Men’s Cross Country National Coaches’ Poll

2016 Preseason — August 31

next release: September 14
Rank Institution (FPV) Points Region (CR) Conference Head Coach (Yr*)
2015 FINAL
1 Colorado Mines (5) 197 South Central (1) RMAC Chris Siemers (5th)
1
2 Grand Valley State (3) 187 Midwest (1) GLIAC Jerry Baltes (18th)
4
3 Adams State 186 South Central (2) RMAC Damon Martin (22nd)
2
4 Alaska Anchorage 179 West (1) GNAC Michael Friess (27th)
3
5 Chico State 166 West (2) CCAA Gary Towne (21st)
6
6 Shippensburg 156 Atlantic (1) PSAC Steve Spence (19th)
5
7 Augustana (S.D.) 151 Central (1) NSIC Tracy Hellman (16th)
7
8 Southern Indiana 141 Midwest (2) GLVC Mike Hillyard (19th)
10
9 Cal Poly Pomona 133 West (3) CCAA Octavious Gillespie-Bennett (5th)
9
10 Western State 127 South Central (3) RMAC Jennifer Michel (10th)
19
11 American International 113 East (1) Northeast-10 Leo Mayo (11th)
17
12 Simon Fraser 103 West (4) GNAC Brit Townsend (17th)
12
13 Lewis 100 Midwest (3) GLVC James Kearney (3rd)
NR
14 West Texas A&M 86 South Central (4) Lone Star Darren Flowers (8th)
18
15 UW-Parkside 85 Midwest (4) GLVC Thomas Breitbach (1st)
8
16 East Central (Okla.) 75 Central (2) Great American Steve Sawyer (8th)
16
17 Lock Haven 71 Atlantic (2) PSAC Aaron Russell (19th)
11
18 CSU-Pueblo 61 South Central (5) RMAC Matt Morris (4th)
NR
19 Mount Olive 59 Southeast (1) Conf. Carolinas Matt Van Lierop (8th)
29
20 MSU Moorhead 43 Central (3) NSIC Ryan Milner (6th)
21
21 Saginaw Valley State 36 Midwest (5) GLIAC Rod Cowan (7th)
NR
22 Western Washington 35 West (5) GNAC Pee Wee Halsell (30th)
NR
23 Southwest Baptist 23 Central (4) MIAA Corey McElhaney (9th)
13
24 Lee (Tenn.) 21 South (1) Gulf South Caleb Morgan (3rd)
26
25 Walsh 17 Midwest (6) GLIAC Rob Mizicko (5th)
23
Also Receiving Votes: Black Hills State 15, Bentley 15, Bellarmine 6, Indiana (Pa.) 5, Metro State 4, SF State 2, Stonehill 1, Mars Hill 1
(* year as head coach of that team in men’s cross country, officially NCAA-recognized coach listed)
USTFCCCA NCAA Division I
's Cross Country National Coaches' Poll

Preseason - November 20th

RANK TEAM & INFOPTS-1
FINAL

USTFCCCA NCAA Division I Cross Country

2016 Rankings & Polls Calendar
Weeks Regional RankingsNational Coaches' Poll KEY DATES
PreseasonMon 8/29
MEN | WOMEN
Tue 8/30
MEN | WOMEN
Week 1Mon 9/12
MEN | WOMEN
Tue 9/13
MEN | WOMEN
Week 2Mon 9/19
MEN | WOMEN
Tue 9/20
MEN | WOMEN
Week 3Mon 9/26
MEN | WOMEN
Tue 9/27
MEN | WOMEN
Week 4Mon 10/3
MEN | WOMEN
Tue 10/4
MEN | WOMEN
Week 5Mon 10/17
MEN | WOMEN
Tue 10/18
MEN | WOMEN
Week 6Mon 10/31
MEN | WOMEN
Tue 11/1
MEN | WOMEN
Week 7Mon 11/14
MEN | WOMEN
FINAL ResultsFri 11/11
MEN | WOMEN
Sat 11/19
MEN | WOMEN
Week-by-Week Ranking Charts

>> REGIONAL RANKINGS
MEN: 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | All Years
WOMEN: 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | All Years

>> NATIONAL COACHES' POLL
MEN: 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | All Years
WOMEN: 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | All Years