10 Pac-12 Cross Country teams appear in the USTFCCCA Preseason Poll
SAN FRANCISCO – The men’s and women’s cross country teams from COLORADO, OREGON, STANFORD, UCLA, UTAH, WASHINGTON, and WASHINGTON STATE appear in the 2017 preseason men's and women's coaches poll released by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) on Tuesday.
Five men’s teams and five women’s teams appear in the top 25. The men have the most teams of any conference, while the women tied for the most with the Big Ten.
On the men’s side, Stanford is No. 2, Colorado is No. 5, Oregon is No. 9, Washington State is No. 11, and UCLA is No. 25.
On the women’s side, Colorado comes in at No. 1, Oregon is No. 2, Stanford is No. 5, Washington is No. 13, and Utah is No. 22.
Nine of the Pac-12's national-best 10 women's All-Americans from 2016 are slated to return this fall: Kaitlyn Benner, Mackenzie Caldwell, Sage Hurtaand Dani Jones from two-time defending Conference champion Colorado; Alli Cash and Katie Rainsberger from defending NCAA champion Oregon; Christina Aragon and Fiona O'Keeffe from Stanford; and defending Pac-12 individual champion Amy-Eloise Neale from Washington.
Five men's All-Americans are set to return this season: John Dressel and Joe Klecker from six-time defending league champion Colorado; Matthew Maton from Oregon; Grant Fisher from Stanford; and Michael Williams from Washington State.
On the women's side, Pac-12 programs landed the top four recruiting classes in the country according to FloSports' distance rankings: #1 Oregon, #2 Stanford, #3 Washington and #4 California.
On the men's side, three Pac-12 programs landed among FloSports' top 15 distance recruiting classes - #1 Stanford, #2 Oregon and #8 Washington - while Washington State's incoming class earned honorable mention recognition.
Eight Pac-12 teams begin their competition season this week, with two months of racing ahead of the 2017 Pac-12 Championships hosted by Oregon at Springfield Golf Club in Springfield, Ore., on Friday, Oct. 27. The races will be broadcast on Pac-12 Networks on Monday, Oct. 30 at 7 p.m. PT.
The NCAA Mountain and West Regionals will be held Friday, Nov. 10 in Logan, Utah and Seattle, Wash., respectively, with teams advancing to the 2017 NCAA Championships in Louisville, Ky., on Saturday, Nov. 18.
The Pac-12 will be looking to add to its distinction as the winningest conference in NCAA Cross Country history this fall as current league members boast the most combined team national championships (28 – 16 men/12 women) and individual titles (28 – 25 men/3 women) of any league in the country.