Sept. 15, 2009
NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) announced the Division I Cross Country rankings Tuesday, and both Irish teams found themselves in the national top 30.
The Notre Dame men were ranked 27th in the national poll, while the women came in at 29th.
The Oregon men were picked first, followed by Oklahoma State, Stanford, Wisconsin and NAU.
Washington topped the women’s poll, with Oregon, Florida State, West Virginia and Villanova rounding out the top five.
Both teams were ranked in the top five of the Great Lakes region with the Irish women earning the fourth spot and the men in fifth.
The Irish women were ranked 29th in the national preseason poll and fourth in the Great Lakes Region.
The Wisconsin men and women each landed at No. 1 in the regional poll. On the men’s side, Butler was ranked second, followed by Michigan, Ohio State and Notre Dame. For the women, Michigan State, Michigan, Notre Dame and Indiana complete the top five.
The Notre Dame men are one of four BIG EAST teams to find a spot in the national preseason poll. Georgetown leads the group in ninth, while Providence is 16th and Villanova ranked 30th. Syracuse and Louisville also received votes in the first poll.
The Irish women are one of six BIG EAST squads ranked in the first poll of 2009. West Virginia opens the season at No. 4, followed by Villanova in fifth, Georgetown in ninth, Providence in 13th and Syracuse 23rd.
The Irish are off to a great start in 2009, after winning the team crowns at the Valparaiso Crusader Open on Sept. 4. Both Notre Dame squads are coming off successful 2008 campaigns in which they earned at-large NCAA Championship bids after finishing fourth at the Great Lakes regional. The Irish men went on to finish 19th at the national meet, while the women were 29th in their first trip to the NCAA Championship since 2005.
Notre Dame will be back on the cross country course Friday when they host the National Catholic Invitational.