2022 NJCAA DII Men’s Cross Country National Coaches’ Poll – Week 3
NEW ORLEANS – What was once close is no longer in the Week 3 edition of the NJCAA Division II Men’s Cross Country National Coaches’ Poll, which was released on Wednesday by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA).
NJCAA Division II — Men's Cross Country
This Week's National Top Five
Lansing (Mich.) CC
Mesa (Ariz.) CC
Paradise Valley (Ariz.) CC
Daytona State (Fla.)
Heartland (Ill.) CC
Cross Country Polls & Rankings
Lansing (Mich.) CC is back to being a near-unanimous No. 1, collecting all but one of the 11 first-place votes. The Stars were impressive at the Muskegon Jayhawk Invitational, finishing as the top JUCO program in third. Michael Dennis led the Stars this time, joining Liam Elder as the team’s No. 1 runner multiple times this year (Lansing has had four different top runners in six races).
Every other position in the top-10 saw adjustment, starting with No. 2 Mesa (Ariz.) CC. The Thunderbirds are at their highest since also being No. 2 in 2021 after finishing as the top NJCAA DII program at the UC Riverside Highlander Invitational.
Reaching a program high for the second-straight week is Paradise Valley (Ariz.) CC at No. 3. The Pumas moved up two positions after venturing to Wisconsin for the Drews/Neubauer Invitational, where they finished as the top NJCAA DII team. They were led by Gilbert Olivas, who finished third individually to earn M-F Athletic National Athlete of the Week honors.
Equaling a program best at No. 4 is Daytona State (Fla.), which last rated this high in 2020. The Falcons, national runner-up last year, were the leading NJCAA DII program at the South Florida Invitational, finishing fourth. They were led by individual winner Christian Ruocco.
No. 5 is Heartland (Ill.) CC, down three places from the last poll. The Hawks were fourth in the Bradley Pink Classic White Division as the top JUCO program.
Rounding out the top-10 are No. 6 Cowley (Kan.), No. 7 Grand Rapids (Mich.) CC, No. 8 Allen (Kan.) CC, No. 9 Lake-Sumter (Fla.) and No. 10. St. Clair County (Mich.) CC.
Just over three weeks away is the 2022 NJCAA Division II Cross Country Championships, which are set for Saturday, November 12 at Apalachee Regional Park in Tallahassee, Florida.