By Spencer Scheve, Communications & Sports Information Intern
KANSAS CITY, Mo – St. Francis (Ill.) claims the No. 1 spot in the 2016 NAIA Coaches’ Preseason Top 25 Poll, the NAIA national office announced Wednesday. St. Francis finished fourth in the 2015 Postseason Top 25 poll.
Top 25 highlights (historical information dates back to 1999):
• St. Francis (Ill.) earns the No. 1 spot. St. Francis maintained its positioned in the Top 10 throughout the entire 2015 season.
• The last time St. Francis earned the No. 1 spot in the Top 25 poll was on October 30, 2013.
• The three-time defending national champion Oklahoma City comes in at the No. 2 spot, receiving a total of 499 points. The Stars have been in the top 5 in eight of the last nine polls.
• Rounding out the top 5 is British Columbia at No. 3 with 483 points, Southern Oregon at No. 4 with 481 points and Saint Mary (Kan.) at No. 5 with 470 points.
• The biggest move in the Top 25 is Indiana Wesleyan falling from No. 3 in the 2015 postseason poll to No. 17 in this edition.
• No. 13 Aquinas (Mich.) extends its streak of being in the Top 25 poll to a NAIA-best 156-consecutive mentions, dating back to Aug. 22, 2000.
• Only three programs have gone the entire season ranked No. 1 – Oklahoma City (2014), Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) in 2008 and former NAIA member Lindenwood (Mo.) in 2007.
• There are four new teams in the Top 25 – No. 18 Northwestern (Iowa), No. 20 Shawnee State (Ohio), No. 21 Northwest Christian (Ore.) and No. 24 Morningside (Iowa).
• The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences and the Association of Independent Institutions.
• The Top 25 is determined by a points system based on how each voter ranks the best teams. A team receives 30 points for each first-place vote, 29 for second-place and so on through the list.
• The highest and lowest ranking for each team (a non-rating is considered a low ratings) is removed and the team’s ranking will be recalculated with an additional point added to each team for every ballot (including discounted ballots) that the teams appears on.
• Teams that receive only one point in the ballot are not considered "receiving votes"
• The frequency of polls occur bi-weekly for the 2016 season.
• For the complete Top 25 calendar, click here.
2016 NAIA Men’s Cross Country Coaches’ Preseason Top 25 Poll – (Aug. 24)
|RANK||LAST||SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES)||TOTAL POINTS|
|1||4||St. Francis (Ill.) (7)||511|
|2||1||Oklahoma City (9)||499|
|3||5||British Columbia (1)||483|
|4||15||Southern Oregon (2)||481|
|5||2||Saint Mary (Kan.)||470|
|6||6||Lewis-Clark State (Idaho)||439|
|7||9||The Master’s (Calif.)||436|
|9||12||SCAD Savannah (Ga.)||371|
|10||10||Olivet Nazarene (Ill.)||350|
|11||7||College of Idaho||339|
|20||RV||Shawnee State (Ohio)||189|
|21||NR||Northwest Christian (Ore.)||183|
|25||23||Wayland Baptist (Texas)||129|
Others receiving votes: Milligan (Tenn.) 86; Embry-Riddle (Ariz.) 84; Westmont (Calif.) 71; Cumberlands (Ky.) 65; Doane (Neb.) 45; Oregon Tech 40; Cornerstone (Mich.) 37; Bethel (Ind.) 32; Campbellsville (Ky.) 18; Dordt (Iowa) 17; Eastern Oregon 5; Our Lady of the Lake (Texas) 3; Rocky Mountain (Mont.) 3; Bethel (Tenn.) 3; Mount Mercy (Iowa) 3.
^Based off 2015 Postseason Coaches’ Poll (Nov. 25, 2015)