Top Five in Coaches' Poll
STANFORD, Calif. – Both the Stanford men's and women's teams were ranked among the top five in the preseason USTFCCCA cross country coaches' polls released Tuesday.
The Stanford men are No. 4 and the Cardinal women are No. 5.
Cross country normally is a fall season, but because of the COVID-19 pandemic, modifications are being made. The NCAA Division I Board of Directors approved a plan that would place the NCAA Championships on March 15. Under this plan, yet to be made official, the first competition can be as early as Jan. 23 and Pac-12 schools may begin official practices after Jan. 1.
In 2019, Stanford was third in the NCAA women's race and sixth in the men's. The Cardinal men have placed among the top six at the past six NCAA championships, and the Card women have placed in the top five the past four years.
Stanford is the defending women's champion of the Pac-12 and NCAA West Region and returns six of its top seven from last year's NCAA lineup. Regional champion, Pac-12 runner-up and national eighth-place finisher Ella Donaghu leads the team. Jessica Lawson was 11th at NCAA's, second at regionals and third in the Pac-12. Also back, in order of NCAA finish, are Abi Archer, Julia Heymach, Jordan Oakes, and Christina Aragon.
The Cardinal men return two-time cross-country All-America Alek Parsons, plus Clayton Mendez, Meika Beaudoin-Rousseau and DJ Principe off last year's NCAA squad.
Stanford has advanced both its men's and women's teams to the NCAA Championships the past 26 years. The two teams have combined for 35 conference championships and nine NCAA titles.