KANSAS CITY, Mo. - After winning the Cascade Conference Championship, Southern Oregon continues to hold the top spot in the final edition of the 2012 NAIA Men's Cross Country Coaches' Top 25 Poll, the national office announced Sunday. The Raiders received 16-of-21 first-place votes and tallied 585 points to earn the No. 1 ranking for the ninth-straight week.
The final rating comes following the competition of conference/independent/unaffiliated group meets. Team and individual qualifiers for the 2012 NAIA Men's Cross Country National Championships will be announced Nov. 5 by 5 p.m. CST. The 57th annual event will take place at the Fort Vancouver National Historic Site in Vancouver, Wash., on Nov. 17.
Receiving four first-place votes and climbing up one spot to No. 2 is St. Francis (Ill.) with 565 points. The Fighting Saints won the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference Championship. Notching the final first-place vote and 558 points after winning the Association of Independent Institution (A.I.I.) Conference Championship was No. 3 Cal State San Marcos. No. 4 Oklahoma Baptist earned 531 points, while British Columbia falls three spots to No. 5 to round out the top five with 523 points. The Bison won the Sooner Athletic Conference Championship while the Thunderbirds finished behind Cal State San Marcos in the A.I.I.
Jumping from No. 20 to No. 13 is Concordia (Neb.), which is the biggest movement in the poll. The Bulldogs won the Great Plains Athletic Conference Championship on Saturday. Colin Morrissey paced Concordia as he won the championship with a team of 25:08.06. On the flip side, Lewis-Clark State (Idaho) slides the farthest dropping nine positions.
Jumping into the Top 25 this week are No. 14 Carroll (Mont.) and No. 16 Concordia (Ore.). The Fighting Saints won the Frontier Conference Championship defeating then-No. 8 Lewis-Clark State. The Cavaliers finished third in the Cascade Conference Championship behind No. 1 Southern Oregon and No. 9 College of Idaho.
Falling from the rankings is Northwest Christian (Ore.) (No. 22) and Saint Mary (Kan.) (No. 24).
Thirteen conferences/independents/unaffiliated groups are represented throughout the Top 25, led by the Cascade Collegiate Conference with four teams. Representing the Cascade are Southern Oregon, College of Idaho, Concordia (Ore.), and No. 23 Eastern Oregon.
The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences/independents/unaffiliated groups. The postseason Top 25 poll will be announced on Nov. 22.
Notes: (All information dates back to 1999) Four teams have started the season ranked No. 1 and gone on to win the national championship: Former NAIA Member Malone (Ohio) - 2007, 08 and 09; Virginia Intermont - 2005 and 06; Former NAIA Member Minot State (N.D.) - 2002; Life (Ga.) - 1999 and 2000... There has only been one program that has been able to maintain the No. 1 ranking for an entire season with Malone accomplishing the feat in 2007 and 08... Southern Oregon has been ranked No. 1 19 times which ranks them tied for second all-time with Life...Malone has been ranked No. 1 the most with 38 selections... Aquinas (Mich.) has been ranked in the Top 25 for 124-consecutive weeks dating back to Aug. 22, 2000...Southern Oregon has been No. 1 for nine-straight weeks.
2012 NAIA Men's Cross Country Coaches Top 25 Poll - Final
|RANK||LAST WEEK||SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES)||FINAL POINTS|
|1||1||Southern Oregon (16)||585|
|2||3||St. Francis (Ill.) (4)||565|
|3||4||Cal State San Marcos (1)||558|
|6||6||Shawnee State (Ohio)||495|
|7||9||Wayland Baptist (Texas)||462|
|9||11||College of Idaho||437|
|15||8||The Master’s (Calif.)||290|
|17||18||Lubbock Christian (Texas)||284|
|19||8||Lewis-Clark State (Idaho)||251|
|23||17||Dickinson State (N.D.)||197|
|24||16||Spring Arbor (Mich.)||164|
Others receiving votes: Olivet Nazarene (Ill.) 78; Baker (Kan.) 75; Oregon Tech 71; Cumberlands (Ky.) 67; Emmanuel (Ga.) 64; Saint Mary (Kan.) 59; Berea (Ky.) 45; Saint Xavier (Ill.) 14; Doane (Neb.) 11; Westmont (Calif.) 10; Missouri Valley 4; Tennessee Wesleyan 3; Columbia (Mo.) 3.