2022 NCAA DI Men’s Cross Country National Coaches’ Poll – Preseason

NEW ORLEANS – Cross country is back!

Here is the preseason edition of the NCAA DI Men’s Cross Country National Coaches’ Poll for the 2022 season, as released on Wednesday by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA). Remember that this poll is conducted by counting votes from 11 member coaches – one from each of the division’s nine regions (who also do the regional rankings) – as well as two members from the NCAA Cross Country Executive Committee.

NCAA Division I — Men's Cross Country
This Week's National Top Five
Northern Arizona
Oklahoma State
Stanford
BYU
Colorado
1
Northern Arizona
2
Oklahoma State
3
Stanford
4
BYU
5
Colorado
Cross Country Polls & Rankings

Water is wet. The sky is blue. Number 1 is NAU.

For the ninth consecutive installment and the 40th time in the past seven years, Northern Arizona tops the National Coaches’ Poll. There is a good reason for that, as the Lumberjacks won five of the past six national titles: 2016, 2017, 2018, 2020 and 2021 (NAU finished runner-up to rival BYU in 2019). All signs point toward another strong run by the Lumberjacks, as they return six of the seven athletes who helped them romp to glory in Tallahassee, Florida, including five All-Americans: Nico Young, Drew Bosley, George Kusche and Brodey Hasty all finished in the top-40 last year. NAU also added several talented freshmen in its recruiting class.

Oklahoma State is projected to be the Lumberjacks’ toughest challenger, as Dave Smith’s team collected one first-place vote and a plethora of seconds. The Cowboys, who finished third last year, will have home-course advantage as the nation’s best will convene in November at the OSU Cross Country Course in Stillwater. Six of the seven athletes from OSU’s scoring lineup return to the fold in 2022, headlined by a trio of All-Americans: Isai Rodriguez, Shea Foster and Victor Shitsama. Alex Maier is due for a big season after his runner-up effort in the 10,000 meters at the NCAA DI Outdoor Track & Field Championships this past June.

Stanford, which finished just off the podium last year, sits third in the preseason. The Cardinal hauled in two first-place votes from the coaches and justifiably so. Stanford had a pair of top-15 athletes last year in Charles Hicks and Ky Robinson, both of whom return. Cole Sprout is going to be looked at as a key cog in the Cardinal machine following a strong year on the track, where he earned three All-America honors in distance events and just missed a fourth outdoors.

BYU sits fourth, three years removed from its first national title in program history. The Cougars are looking to improve on a pair of top-7 finishes at the last two editions of the NCAA Championships. Back-to-back individual champion Conner Mantz is no longer on the roster and removed an ultimate low stick from BYU’s lineup, but Ed Eyestone will hope for more big things from 2021 top-10 finisher Casey Clinger. The Cougars also added Weber State transfer Christian Allen in the offseason. Allen has two career top-20 finishes at the NCAA Championships.

Colorado comes in at No. 5 with the season just days away. The Buffaloes, who finished eight last year, welcome back four athletes from that team (no All-Americans) and added Wisconsin transfer Seth Hirsch in the offseason. This is the 19th time since 1998 that Colorado garnered a top-5 ranking in the preseason. The Buffs have finished top-5 at the NCAA Championships in seven of the past 11 years, including back-to-back national titles in 2013 and 2014.

Here are the rest of the top-10 teams in the preseason: t-No. 6 Tulsa, t-No. 6 Wisconsin, No. 8 Washington, No. 9 Wake Forest and No. 10 Iowa State. This is the best preseason ranking in program history for the Demon Deacons and the first time they’ve ever been in the top-10.

Mark your calendars for November 19, as that’s when the 2022 NCAA DI Cross Country Championships will be held at the OSU Cross Country Course in Stillwater, Oklahoma. Don’t forget that the championship races will be broadcast commercial-free once again on ESPNU.

USTFCCCA NCAA Division I
Men's Cross Country National Coaches' Poll

2022 Preseason - August 31st

RANK TEAM & INFOPTS2021
FINAL
1 northern-arizona NORTHERN ARIZONA
Mountain Region (1)
Big Sky
Michael Smith (6th)
326
(8 fpv)
1
2 oklahoma-state OKLAHOMA STATE
Midwest Region (1)
Big 12
Dave Smith (17th)
313
(1 fpv)
3
3 stanford STANFORD
West Region (1)
Pac-12
J.J. Clark (4th)
308
(2 fpv)
5
4 byu BYU
Mountain Region (2)
WCC
Ed Eyestone (23rd)
288 7
5 colorado COLORADO
Mountain Region (3)
Pac-12
Mark Wetmore (28th)
263 8
6 tulsa TULSA
Midwest Region (2)
American
Steve Gulley (21st)
253 6
6 wisconsin WISCONSIN
Great Lakes Region (1)
Big Ten
Mick Byrne (15th)
253 11
8 washington WASHINGTON
West Region (2)
Pac-12
Andy Powell (5th)
250 13
9 wake-forest WAKE FOREST
Southeast Region (1)
ACC
John Hayes (7th)
241 10
10 iowa-state IOWA STATE
Midwest Region (3)
Big 12
Jeremy Sudbury (2nd)
234 2
11 harvard HARVARD
Northeast Region (1)
Ivy League
Alex Gibby (6th)
214 12
12 arkansas ARKANSAS
South Central Region (1)
SEC
Chris Bucknam (15th)
195 4
13 air-force AIR FORCE
Mountain Region (4)
Mountain West
Ryan Cole (9th)
184 17
14 notre-dame NOTRE DAME
Great Lakes Region (2)
ACC
Matt Sparks (1st)
181 9
15 portland PORTLAND
West Region (4)
WCC
Rob Conner (33rd)
177 16
16 gonzaga GONZAGA
West Region (3)
WCC
Patrick Tyson (15th)
139 26
16 north-carolina NORTH CAROLINA
Southeast Region (3)
ACC
Chris Miltenberg (4th)
139 18
18 villanova VILLANOVA
Mid-Atlantic Region (1)
Big East
Marcus O'Sullivan (23rd)
131 ---
19 ole-miss OLE MISS
South Region (1)
SEC
Connie Price-Smith (1st)
112 15
20 furman FURMAN
Southeast Region (2)
SoCon
Robert Gary (11th)
110 31
21 syracuse SYRACUSE
Northeast Region (2)
ACC
Brien Bell (5th)
101 19
22 butler BUTLER
Great Lakes Region (3)
Big East
Matt Roe (16th)
89 28
23 georgetown GEORGETOWN
Mid-Atlantic Region (2)
Big East
Brandon Bonsey (7th)
87 22
24 montana-state MONTANA STATE
Mountain Region (5)
Big Sky
Lyle Weese (5th)
78 ---
25 princeton PRINCETON
Mid-Atlantic Region (3)
Ivy League
Jason Vigilante (11th)
77 23
26 alabama ALABAMA
South Region (2)
SEC
Dan Waters (12th)
71 27
27 texas TEXAS
South Central Region (2)
Big 12
Greg Metcalf (1st)
65 14
28 michigan-state MICHIGAN STATE
Great Lakes Region (4)
Big Ten
Aaron Simoneau (2nd)
42 30
29 michigan MICHIGAN
Great Lakes Region (5)
Big Ten
Kevin Sullivan (9th)
37 25
30 tennessee TENNESSEE
South Region (3)
SEC
Sean Carlson (1st)
32 ---

Also Receiving Votes: Providence 30, Florida State 22, Boise State 19, Minnesota 14, Utah State 13, Iona 11, NC State 9, Oregon 6, Colorado State 1



Week-by-Week Ranking

Only showing those with a season-best ranking in the top 25.
TeamPreseasonWeek #1Week #2
Northern Arizona111
Oklahoma State222
Stanford333
BYU444
Colorado555
Tulsa666
Wisconsin667
Washington888
Iowa State1099
Wake Forest9109
Air Force131111
Notre Dame141312
North Carolina161713
Arkansas121414
Harvard111215
Gonzaga161816
Georgetown232317
Villanova181618
Portland151519
Syracuse211920
Princeton252021
Montana State242422
Furman202123
Ole Miss192224
Alabama262525
Butler222726
Michigan292627
Michigan State283028
Texas272829
IonaRVRV30
Tennessee3029RV
Boise StateRVRVRV
Florida StateRVRVRV
OregonRVRVRV
NC StateRVRVRV
ProvidenceRVRVRV
Utah StateRVRVRV
VirginiaRVRV
CharlotteRV
KentuckyRV
MinnesotaRV
Colorado StateRV

USTFCCCA NCAA Division I Cross Country

2022 Rankings & Polls Calendar
Weeks Regional RankingsNational Coaches' Poll KEY DATES
PreseasonTue 8/30
MEN | WOMEN
Wed 8/31
MEN | WOMEN
Sep. 1: Earliest Contest
Week 1Mon 9/12
MEN | WOMEN
Tue 9/13
MEN | WOMEN
Sep. 9: At-large Countable Period Begins
Week 2Mon 9/19
MEN | WOMEN
Tue 9/20
MEN | WOMEN
Week 3Mon 9/26
Tue 9/27
Week 4Mon 10/3
Tue 10/4
Oct. 15: Pre-National
Week 5Mon 10/17
Tue 10/18
Oct. 27-30: Conference Champs
Week 6Mon 10/31
Tue 11/1
Nov. 11: NCAA Regionals
Week 7Mon 11/14
Nov. 19: NCAA Championships - Stillwater, Okla.
FINAL ResultsFri 11/11
Sat 11/19