LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Oklahoma, the 2016 national champions, is the unanimous No. 1 selection in the 2017 USA Today/NFCA Division I Preseason Coaches Poll, announced the Association on Tuesday morning.
The Sooners (57-8), who collected their program’s third national title, received all 32 first-place votes and 800 points to garner the first unanimous preseason pick since Arizona State in 2012. Under the guidance of head coach Patty Gasso, OU defeated preseason No. 2 Auburn in a thrilling three-game championship series. They open the season on Feb. 9 in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico against preseason No. 2 Auburn, a rematch of the 2016 WCWS Championship series, and BYU.
Auburn (58-12) earned 745 points after a runner-up finish at the Women’s College World Series. The Tigers start a run of four Southeastern Conference programs in the top 7 and nine in the top 20.
WCWS semifinalist Florida State (56-7) grabbed the No. 3 spot with 683 points, while back-to-back semifinalist LSU (52-18) received 671 points, matching SEC foe and league preseason favorite Florida (56-7) at No. 4.
WCWS participants Michigan (52-7 /655), Alabama (51-14 / 633) and UCLA (40-16-1 / 534) rank 6th, 7th and 8th, while the final WCWS participant, Georgia (46-20 / 435) was voted 12th.
Joining Pac-12 rivals UCLA in the top 10 are Oregon (48-10 / 484) and Arizona (466 / 40-21) at No. 9 and 10, respectively.
As previously mentioned, the SEC led the way with nine selections, all in the top-20. Along with three top-10 programs, the Pac-12 follows with five representatives. The Atlantic Coast Conference, Big 12 and Big Ten each boast two teams in the top-25, while the American Athletic Conference, Colonial Athletic Association, Conference USA, Mountain West and Sun Belt garnered one nod apiece.
The USA Today/NFCA Division I Top 25 Poll is voted on by 32 NCAA Division I head coaches, one representing each conference. Final 2016 records are shown, first-place votes are in parentheses.
2017 USA Today/NFCA Division I Softball Coaches Poll
Preseason | Jan. 31, 2017
Dropped Out: None
Receiving Votes: Oregon State (23), Oklahoma State (22), Texas (17), South Carolina (13), Ole Miss (12), Nebraska (12), UCF (10), Tulsa (7), California (6), Cal State Fullerton (5), Arizona State (3), Northwestern (3), North Carolina (2), Ohio State (2), BYU (1), USC Upstate (1).
The USA Today/NFCA Division I Coaches Poll is voted on by 32 NCAA Division I head coaches, one representing each conference.