KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Texas Wesleyan begins the 2012-13 season at No. 1 in the NAIA Men's Golf Coaches' Preseason Top 25 Poll, the national office announced Friday. The Rams, who placed sixth at last year's NAIA Men's Golf National Championships at Creekside Golf Club in Salem, Ore., collected 13-of-18 first-place votes and earned 494 points en route to their first-ever top billing.
Texas Wesleyan returns three NAIA All-America selections from last year, including NAIA national championship individual runner-up Nathan Anderson. Anderson, who received first team honors, finished one stroke behind individual medalist Carson Kallis of Victoria (B.C.) with a 72-hole score of 284. Teammates Dillon Watkins and Jose Rolz were the Rams' other two All-Americans, both earning third team distinction.
Defending national champion Oklahoma City dropped one spot from last season's postseason poll to No. 2. The Stars garnered four first-place nods and pulled in 479 points. No. 3 Cal State San Marcos vaulted 13 places from its 2012 postseason ranking of No. 16 with 458 points. The Cougars notched two team titles this fall at the California State Intercollegiate Tournament on Sept. 23 - 25 and the CSUSM Fall Invite on Oct. 14 - 16. No. 4 Cumberlands (Ky.) and No. 5 Bellevue (Neb.) were awarded 444 and 438 points to round out the top five. Bellevue also received the remaining first-place vote.
In total, 12 teams join the poll that were not ranked at the end of last season. Fifth-ranked Bellevue is the highest ranked of those squads, while No. 6 Oklahoma Baptist, No. 8 The Master's (Calif.) and No. 10 Northwood (Texas) are also rated amongst the top 10. Of the newcomers, Bellevue, No. 11 Coastal Georgia, No. 15 Northwestern (Iowa) and No. 19 Ashford (Iowa) are making their first appearance in the Top 25, dating back to 2000.
The highest-rated NAIA school in the previous poll to drop out of the Top 25 is Victoria, who was ranked No. 7. Webber International (Fla.) (No. 12), Holy Cross (Ind.) (No. 15), Bethany (Kan.) (No. 17), Madonna (Mich.) (No. 19), Carroll (Mont.) (No. 21), Tennessee Wesleyan (No. 22) and Northwood (Fla.) (No. 24) also fell out of the poll.
The Sooner Athletic Conference (SAC) boasts the most representatives in the Top 25 with four members: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma Baptist, No. 17 Lubbock Christian (Texas) and No. 20 Wayland Baptist (Texas). The Red River Athletic Conference, Association of Independent Institutions and Southern States Athletic Conference are tied for second with three ranked teams.
The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences, independents and unaffiliated groups. The first regular-season Top 25 poll will be announced on March 15, 2013.
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Notes (All information as of 2000): Texas Wesleyan is making its first-ever appearance at No. 1 ... Defending national champion Oklahoma City boasts the most No. 1 rankings with 36 ... Former NAIA members Oklahoma Christian (25) and Simon Fraser (B.C.) (2) are the only other schools to appear at No. 1 more than once ... Oklahoma City has never been ranked outside of the top five ... Since 2002, Texas Wesleyan and British Columbia, who garnered the top ranking in the 2009 preseason poll, are the only schools other than Oklahoma City and Oklahoma Christian to appear at No. 1 ... No. 5 Bellevue (Neb.), No. 11 Coastal Georgia, No. 15 Northwestern (Iowa) and No. 19 Ashford (Iowa) are receiving Top 25 mention for the first time.2012-13 NAIA Men's Golf Coaches' Preseason Top 25 Poll - Nov. 9
|RANK||LAST TIME^||SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES)||TOTAL POINTS|
|1||6||Texas Wesleyan (13)||494|
|2||1||Oklahoma City (4)||479|
|3||16||Cal State San Marcos||458|
|5||RV||Bellevue (Neb.) (1)||438|
|8||RV||The Master’s (Calif.)||362|
|12||8||Our Lady of the Lake (Texas)||325|
|13||RV||Mount Mercy (Iowa)||318|
|14||4||Johnson & Wales (Fla.)||311|
|16||10||Grand View (Iowa)||244|
|17||23||Lubbock Christian (Texas)||236|
|18||9||William Woods (Mo.)||214|
|20||18||Wayland Baptist (Texas)||160|
|21||15||South Carolina Beaufort||158|
|22||NR||Southern Wesleyan (S.C.)||154|
|23||RV||Lindsey Wilson (Ky.)||151|
Others receiving votes: St. Thomas (Fla.) 85; Lewis-Clark State (Idaho) 82; Rogers State (Okla.) 81; Victoria (B.C.) 72; Webber International (Fla.) 39; Concordia (Ore.) 25; Westminster (Utah) 22; Holy Cross (Ind.) 22; Spring Hill (Ala.) 21; Bethany (Kan.) 16; Davenport (Mich.) 8; Carroll (Mont.) 5; Faulkner (Ala.) 5; Morningside (Iowa) 3; Cumberland (Tenn.) 3; Thomas (Ga.) 3.
^ Ranking indicated in 2011-12 Postseason Top 25 Poll (June 1, 2012)