Irish men's head coach Joe Piane

Irish Cross Country Teams Earn Pre-Season Rankings

Sept. 17, 2008

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The Notre Dame men’s cross country team is ranked 20th nationally, while both the men’s and women’s squads rank in the top-five in the Great Lakes Region, according to the pre-season poll released by the USTFCCCA this week.

The Irish men were chosen 20th nationally and were placed third regionally, behind Michigan and Wisconsin. Michigan State and Indiana round out the Great Lakes Region top five, while Oregon took the top spot in the national poll.

“We flattered that people think so highly of this year’s team,” Irish men’s head coach Joe Piane said. “It’s still very early in the season. We’re going to go out there and do our best to earn that ranking.”

The women were ranked fourth regionally and received multiple votes for the national poll. Michigan State, Wisconsin, Michigan and Akron round out the top-five Great Lakes women’s teams.

“It’s nice to be recognized, but we have a long way to go,” Irish women’s head coach Tim Connelly said. “We have to keep getting better as the season goes on. Fourth place doesn’t guarantee a spot at the NCAAs.”

The women’s squad took first and the men second at the season-opening Valparaiso Invitational Sept. 5. Sophomore Marissa Treece won the women’s individual title.

Notre Dame will host the 29th Annual National Catholic Cross Country Championships Friday.