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2017 NAIA DII Men's Basketball Coaches' Preseason Top 25 Poll

October 24, 2017
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By Alan Grosbach, Associate Director of Athletic Communications and Media

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Cornerstone (Mich.), which held the top-spot four times last season, boasts the No. 1 ranking in the 2017-18 NAIA Division II Men’s Basketball Coaches’ Preseason Top 25 Poll, the national office announced Tuesday. The Golden Eagles tallied 10 first-place votes and 311 total points.

Top 25 Highlights (historical information dates back to 1998)
• Cornerstone finished last season as the national runner-up after falling to Union (Ky.) in the finals of the 2017 NAIA Division II Men’s Basketball National Championship
• The Golden Eagles return nine letter-winners from last year’s squad, including NAIA First Team All-American Kyle Steigenga. The senior forward averaged 21.8 points and 9.8 rebounds per game, and ended the year with 20 double-doubles.
• Cornerstone faces three ranked teams in its first four games – No. 6 Indiana Wesleyan on October 27, No. 3 Saint Francis (Ind.) on November 3 and No. 2 Union on November 4.
• Defending national champion Union claimed the other two first-place votes.
• The following programs are newcomers to the poll: No. 10 Southern Oregon, No. 13 Southwestern (Kan.), No. 14 Florida Memorial, No. 20 St. Thomas (Fla.) and No. 23 Montreat (N.C.). Florida Memorial and St. Thomas were both ranked last season, while Southern Oregon and Southwestern most recently received Top 25 mention on March 23, 2016. Montreat snaps the longest drought among the quintet, as the Cavaliers last appeared in the poll on January 10, 2007.
• No. 22 Bethel (Ind.) boasts the most appearances at No. 1 with 38.
• Indiana Wesleyan holds the longest active streak in the poll with 67-straight mentions. Bethel is next with 57-consecutive appearances, while Cornerstone is third at 46-straight.

Poll Methodology
• The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences and 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”
Frequency of polls occur bi-weekly. This policy was approved by the National Administrative Council (NAC) for the 2016-17 academic season. This change will allow raters the opportunity to consider a larger body of work in between rating periods.
• For the complete Top 25 calendar, click here.

2017-18 NAIA Division II Men’s Basketball Coaches’ Preseason Top 25 Poll (October 24, 2017)

RANK LAST TIME^ SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES) 2016-17 RECORD TOTAL POINTS
1 2 Cornerstone (Mich.) (10) 34-4 311
2 1 Union (Ky.) (2) 35-3 295
3 13 Saint Francis (Ind.) 23-11 284
4 5 Bellevue (Neb.) 25-11 281
5 12 Northwestern (Iowa) 27-7 264
6 3 Indiana Wesleyan 29-8 262
7 14 College of Idaho 24-10 256
8 7 Trinity International (Ill.) 30-6 249
9 6 IU East (Ind.) 28-8 238
10 20 Dakota Wesleyan (S.D.) 23-10 206
11 NR Southern Oregon 18-13 194
12 10 Robert Morris (Ill.) 27-7 189
13 RV Southwestern (Kan.) 23-10 183
14 RV Florida Memorial 18-8 171
15 21 Taylor (Ind.) 21-12 168
T16 8 Tabor (Kan.) 25-10 136
T16 22 Oregon Tech 24-10 136
18 11 Briar Cliff (Iowa) 26-8 132
19 23 IU Southeast (Ind.) 24-7 131
20 RV St. Thomas (Fla.) 20-9 106
21 18 Rochester (Mich.) 29-3 105
22 4 Bethel (Ind.) 31-5 81
23 NR Montreat (N.C.) 19-10 80
24 9 Northwest Christian (Ore.) 25-6 69
25 16 Warner (Fla.) 25-4 68


Others Receiving Votes: Morningside (Iowa) 59; WVU Tech 57; Olivet Nazarene (Ill.) 40; Oklahoma Wesleyan 35; Valley City State (N.D.) 27; Washington Adventist (Md.) 24; York (Neb.) 13; Keiser (Fla.) 13; Michigan-Dearborn 12; Benedictine Mesa (Ariz.) 9; Reinhardt (Ga.) 7; Dickinson State (N.D.) 6; Corban (Ore.) 4; Spring Arbor (Mich.) 4; Southeastern (Fla.) 3.

^ Top 25 ranking from the 2016-17 Postseason Poll