By: Chad Waller, Director of Athletics Communications and Media
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The unanimous No. 1 choice in the NAIA Division I Men’s Basketball Coaches’ Top 25 Poll is LSU Alexandria (La.), announced Tuesday by the national office. The Generals have held the top spot in each of the last five polls. The final Top 25 installment will be announced Wednesday, March 8.
Official qualifiers and bracket for the 2017 Buffalo Funds-NAIA Division I Men’s Basketball National Championship will be announced via a video selection show at 8 p.m. CST on March 8. Additionally, information will be posted on www.NAIA.org.
Top 25 Highlights (historical information dates back to 2000):
• LSU Alexandria (La.) is the lone undefeated team in NAIA men’s basketball – Division I & Division II. The Generals boast a 29-0 record heading into the Red River Athletic Conference (RRAC) tournament, which begins Thursday.
• The Generals captured all 10 first-place votes for the fifth-consecutive time and posted 250 total points. Overall, LSU Alexandria has held the top spot in 10 out of the last 14 polls dating back to last season.
• In national statistical rankings, LSU Alexandria displays success at both ends of the court ranking No. 3 in field goal percentage defense (.393) and No. 4 in field goal percentage (.503).
• The No. 1-seeded Generals host the RRAC postseason tournament and play the lowest remaining seed on Friday.
• LSU Alexandria earned its third-straight berth to the NAIA National Championship having won the RRAC regular-season title.
• The Heart of America Athletic Conference regular-season champion and No. 2 William Penn (Iowa) holds in the Top 25 for the third-straight week.
• No. 3 Dalton State (Ga.) moves up two spots for its highest position this year.
• No. 4 Carroll (Mont.) and No. 5 Hope International (Calif.) both enjoy their highest ranking this season.
• No. 8 Pikeville (Ky.) and No. 17 Park (Mo.) claim the best positive movement with a six-spot hike. Conversely, No. 21 Cumberlands (Ky.) falls 12 spots for the worst drop.
• Two of the three newcomers this week – No. 20 Life (Ga.) and No. 25 Martin Methodist (Tenn.) – are ranked for the first time this year. The other rookie, No. 22 Langston (Okla.), last was mentioned on Dec. 6, 2016.
• Life was last in the Top 25 back on Dec. 10, 2013 (No. 20 – tie). The Running Eagles have won nine-straight contests, including four over teams currently ranked in the Coaches’ Poll. Martin Methodist checks back in after a spot on Dec. 8, 2015 (No. 17 – tie).
• Through all seven polls (including Preseason) this year, there have been 45 different teams to hold a position in the Top 25. Of that group, 12 programs have been ranked all season long.
• Pikeville leads the active group of being ranked in the Top 25 with 57-straight mentions, which dates back to the start of the 2012-13 season. The second longest streak belongs to Georgetown (52-straight) and is followed by Talladega (Ala.) (45-straight).
• The Golden State Athletic Conference and Mid-South Conference each boast the most teams in the Top 25 with four apiece. Three other leagues land a trio of ranked squads.
• Nine of 10 conferences claim at least two ranked programs.
• There have been 37 different teams since 2000 to hold the No. 1 position. Former NAIA member Mountain State (W.Va.) leads the all-time charts with 48 all-time No. 1 rankings, followed by NAIA Division II member Robert Morris (Ill.) with 24. Georgetown is next with 13, former member Concordia (Calif.) at 12, former member Cal State San Marcos at 11, LSU Alexandria at 10 and Columbia at nine No. 1 recognitions.
• Robert Morris, now a NAIA Division II member in the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC), is the only program to start and end a season ranked No. 1, doing so during the 2006 – 07 season.
• 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”
• 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.
2016 – 17 NAIA Division I Men’s Basketball Coaches’ Top 25 Poll – Feb. 28 (No. 6)
|RANK||LAST WEEK^||SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES)||2016-17 RECORD||TOTAL POINTS|
|1||1||LSU Alexandria (10)||29-0||250|
|2||2||William Penn (Iowa)||27-3||242|
|3||5||Dalton State (Ga.)||24-4||228|
|5||10||Hope International (Calif.)||24-6||212|
|13||17||William Carey (Miss.)||22-6||149|
|14||18||The Master's (Calif.)||23-4||142|
|15||12||LSU Shreveport (La.)||20-8||139|
|T22||24||Grand View (Iowa)||20-9||81|
|25||RV||Martin Methodist (Tenn.)||21-9||54|
Dropped from rankings: No. 19 Oklahoma City; No. 20 Wiley (Texas); No. 25 Our Lady of the Lake (Texas).
Others Receiving Votes: Our Lady of the Lake (Texas) 51; Lewis-Clark State (Idaho) 38; Wiley (Texas) 30; Southwestern Christian (Okla.) 24; William Woods (Mo.) 20; Oklahoma City 12; Loyola (La.) 10; Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) 4.
^ Previous ranking occurred Feb. 14, 2017