2019 NCAA DII Indoor Track & Field Rating Index – Preseason
NEW ORLEANS – It’s time to check out the first National Rating Index of the newest NCAA Division II Indoor Track & Field season, which is about to wrap up its second full week on Friday.
Right now, the Adams State men and the Grand Valley State women are the favorites to bring home national titles at the conclusion of the 2019 NCAA DII Indoor Championships on March 9 in Pittsburg, Kansas. If the Grizzlies and the Lakers top the podium at the end of the season, it would be their third and fourth national title, respectively.
This marks the third time in the past four years that Adams State’s men have been ranked No. 1 to begin the season. The Grizzlies also headlined the chart in 2015 and 2017. Adams State is expected to score a lot of points in distance events, as Sydney Gidabuday is ranked among the top returners in the nation in the mile, 3000 and 5000. Gidabuday is joined by Elias Gedyon, who is ranked first in the mile and second in the 3000. Don’t count out the Grizzlies’ throwers either, as Samuel Reid is the fourth best returner coming back in the shot put.
Colorado Mines sits No. 2 in the preseason and this is the highest the program has been ranked this early in the season. The Orediggers did own the top spot on five separate occasions last year, including four consecutive weeks at No. 1 from Week 1 to Week 4.
Tiffin is No. 3 and has been on quite the run in recent memory. The Dragons won back-to-back national titles in 2016 and 2017, then finished runner-up to Pittsburg State last year.
Ashland, two years removed from a runner-up finish, is ranked No. 4. The Eagles could get a lot of mileage out of Myles Pringle as well as a trio of weight throwers, including Alex Hill and Brent Fairbanks, who are ranked as the No. 1 and No. 2 returners in the nation.
Grand Valley State rounds out the top-5 in fifth. The Lakers have been ranked in the top-5 in five of the past six years, including the top spot to begin the 2015-16 season.
The computers expect Grand Valley State’s women to continue their success from the cross country season. The Lakers won the national title just 10 days ago in another Pittsburgh (That one is spelled with an ‘H’ at the end and is in Pennsylvania). GVSU has a stacked distance corps and should get some points out of its vaulters and throwers. This is the first time that the Lakers have been ranked No. 1 to begin the season since 2015-16.
Last year’s national runner-up Lincoln (Mo.) sits No. 2. The Blue Tigers have been ranked No. 2 to begin the season twice before and each time they ended up on the podium (third-place finish in 2012 and a runner-up showing in 2013).
Adams State sits No. 3, looking for its fourth national title in program history. The Grizzlies last won in 2017 and also topped the podium in 2014 and 2008.
Defending national champion West Texas A&M is ranked fourth to begin the new season. That’s exactly where the Lady Buffs started the season last year and look how it turned out for them.
Azusa Pacific is ranked No. 5, a far cry from where it has started the season in the past three years. The Cougars were ranked No. 39 in 2016, No. 51 in 2017 and No. 12 last year.
Past collegiate data is used to determine preseason rankings in NCAA Division II. Subsequent rankings use only season-best, qualifying-list information from the new season.