LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Michigan supplanted Florida as the No. 1 team in this week’s USA Today/NFCA Division I Top 25 Coaches Poll. The Wolverines (27-3) picked up 17 first-place votes and 781 points to leapfrog the Gators (34-3) for the first time this season.
Michigan swept a three-game Big Ten road series from Indiana, while Florida dropped two-of-three at home to then-No. 6 Alabama. In moving to No. 1, the Wolverines reached the top ranking for the first time since April 19, 2011. During the three-game sweep, head coach Carol Hutchins became the NCAA’s all-time winningest coach. Saturday’s 8-0 triumph in Bloomington brought her win total to 1,458, surpassing previous record holder Margie Wright (Fresno State).
The Gators received 10-first place votes and 765 points and were one of five programs to gather first-place nods, along with Auburn (2), Alabama (2) and James Madison (1).
Florida and Alabama locked up in an intense three-game SEC series in Gainesville with the now fourth-ranked Crimson Tide (31-7) winning games one (2-1) and three (3-0) behind the solid pitching of Sydney Littlejohn. The Gators earned a one-run victory (3-2) in game two on Saturday.
Auburn remained in the three-hole following a sweep of then-No. 14 Kentucky in Lexington over the weekend. The Tigers (33-4) opened with a 9-0 triumph before earning a pair of close victories to finish the sweep, 6-5 and 3-1 in nine innings.
No. 5 Louisiana-Lafayette, No. 7 James Madison, No. 8 LSU, No. 9 Florida State and No. 10 Georgia remained in their respective rankings, while Oregon slipped two spots to No. 6. The Dukes (30-2) were the only squad to post an undefeated week as they shut out their opposition in four of five games. The Ragin’ Cajuns (29-3) dropped their opener at No. 19 Baylor (0-2) before rattling off four straight wins to close out the week, including a 4-3 win over the Bears and a three-game Sun Belt sweep of Texas State.
The Ducks (27-6) dropped two of three at home to then-No. 16 UCLA (6-16, 6-5, 1-4), while the Tigers (28-9) went on the road and picked up two wins (5-4, 5-1) over the No. 10 Bulldogs in Athens. Only able to get two games in due to inclement weather, the ninth-ranked Seminoles (27-4) split an ACC road twinbill at then-No. 22 Notre Dame (14-5, 4-5).
There was some movement over the final 15 spots of the poll, but no new faces made appearances this week.
The USA Today/NFCA Division I Top 25 Poll is voted on by 32 NCAA Division I head coaches, one representing each conference. Records reflect games played through April 3, 2016.
2016 USA Today/NFCA Division I Softball Coaches Poll
Week 8 | April 5, 2016 (Results through 4/3)
|Rank||Team||Totals||2016 Record||Last Poll|
|7||James Madison (1)||611||30-2||7|
Dropped Out: None
New to Poll: None
Receiving Votes: Cal State Fullerton (15), Nebraska (14), Tulsa (9), Ohio State (5), California (3), South Alabama (3), Utah (3), BYU (2), UCF (2), South Carolina (2), McNeese State (1), Mississippi (1), Texas (1).
The USA Today/NFCA Division I Softball Coaches Poll is voted on by 32 NCAA Division I head coaches, one representing each conference.