LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Florida secured its second straight SEC regular-season championship and held steady at No. 1 in this week’s USA Today/NFCA Division I Top 25 Coaches Poll. A red-hot Oklahoma rose to No. 5 for its highest ranking of the season.
The Gators (52-4), receiving 31 first-place votes and 799 points, closed out the regular season with five wins to reach the 50-win plateau for the fourth straight season and eighth time overall. UF began the week with two victories over then-No. 5 Florida State, a 7-1 triumph and a 12-inning 1-0 victory in a continued game from April. Wrapping up SEC play, Florida, in the midst of sweeping Arkansas (9-0, 5-0, 8-0), clinched its six overall league regular-season title.
No. 2 Michigan (44-4), who received the other first-place vote and 768 points, swept Rutgers (9-1, 11-1, 8-0) to clinch its ninth straight Big Ten regular-season crown and 19th overall.
No. 3 Oregon and No. 4 Alabama both went 2-1 in conference play. After a sweep of Utah Valley, the Ducks (42-7) took games one (15-2) and three (5-2) at Cal, needing one more win next weekend against RV Utah to clinch their fourth straight outright Pac-12 regular-season title. The Crimson Tide (45-11) clinched their final SEC series, winning the first two games against No. 15 Georgia (7-2, 9-7) and securing fourth place for the league tournament.
The Sooners (45-7) cruised to a three-game sweep of Texas Tech to earn their fifth straight Big 12 regular-season championship and ninth overall; no other Big 12 program has won more than two consecutive. Along with a mid-week triumph at Tulsa, Oklahoma is riding a 20-game winning streak, matching the fourth longest in program history and the longest since a 24-game streak in 2007.
Florida State fell a spot to No. 6 after a 3-3 week. The Seminoles (45-8) dropped two to No. 1 Florida, but rebounded with a win over Florida A&M (12-3) and a 2-1 ACC series triumph against Louisville (0-4, 9-0, 4-3). FSU will be the top seed at the ACC Tournament in Raleigh, N.C.
No. 7 James Madison (43-4) jumped up one as it closed out with two wins against Hofstra (4-0, 7-1) and will be the host and No. 1 seed for the CAA Tournament. Auburn fell two more spots to No. 8 after dropping two of three to then-No. 18 Texas A&M at home. The Tigers (46-9) finished third in the SEC regular season and earned a first-round bye for the tournament.
Louisiana-Lafayette and Tennessee remained at No. 9 and No. 10. The Ragin’ Cajuns (40-7) swept ULM and will be the No. 1 seed at the SunBelt Tournament in Mobile, Ala. The Vols (40-13) wrapped up league play taking two of three at Ole Miss (7-2, 0-3, 11-1) and grabbing the third seed and a first-round bye at the SEC Tournament.
There was slight movement in the rest of the poll. Kentucky and LSU slid up one spot each to No. 11 and 12, while Washington dropped from 11th to 13th. The Tigers (42-14) edged the Huskies (33-13) in a 2-1 (6-0, 4-9, 5-4 in 9 inn.) in a late non-conference showdown in Baton Rouge.
Fresno State made its way into the top 20 for the first time this season, inching up to No. 19 after two wins over Nevada (7-3, 10-6).
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 May 8, 2016.
2016 USA Today/NFCA Division I Softball Coaches Poll
Week 13 | May 10, 2016 (Results through 5/8)
|Rank||Team||Totals||2016 Record||Last Poll|
Dropped Out: None
Receiving Votes: Cal State Fullerton (8), California (8), Texas (7), Utah (2), Arizona State (1).
The USA Today/NFCA Division I Softball Coaches Poll is voted on by 32 NCAA Division I head coaches, one representing each conference.