Tuesday, August 16, 2005
The University of Alabama soccer team has been picked to finish third in the SEC Western Division according to the 2005 SEC Preseason Coaches’ Poll. This is the highest preseason ranking for Alabama since 1999.
“It's obviously nice to have your fellow coaches recognize the impact of our recruiting and last season’s results,” head coach Don Staley said, “However, this is a new year and I'm never one to get too high or too low on preseason polls because what matters is where we are at the end of the season."
Last year Alabama was picked to finish last in the Western Division, however the Crimson Tide finished 5-6 in the conference, 10-11 overall, good for third place in the division and for a berth into the SEC Tournament. This season Alabama will look to shake the doubters again and improve upon 2004’s finish.
Florida was tabbed by the coaches as the preseason favorite to win the conference title with six first place votes. Tennessee was a close second with five while Auburn received one first place vote.
Auburn (60 pts) and Ole Miss (51 pts.) finished ahead of Alabama (37 pts.) in the preseason votes for the Western Division race. LSU (24 pts.), Mississippi State (23 pts.) and Arkansas (21 pts.) rounded out the voting.