Story courtesy of Akron Media Relations
AKRON, Ohio - Already ranked preseason No. 1 in the nation by the College Soccer News, The University of Akron men's soccer program got another boost Tuesday by earning the top spot in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) poll.
All four College Cup teams from a year ago earned the top four spots in the rankings as Virginia, Wake Forest and North Carolina were listed second through fourth, respectively. The Zips will face No. 4 UNC in the first game of the regular season on Sept. 3 in Chapel Hill, N.C., before traveling to Winston-Salem, N.C., to meet No. 3 Wake Forest on Sept. 5.
In all, UA will face five opponents who made the preseason poll, highlighted by a home match against No. 7 Tulsa on Sept. 24 at newly renovated Lee Jackson Field. Akron will also face No. 18 Ohio State in Columbus, Ohio, on Sept. 29 and No. 24 Michigan State in East Lansing, Mich., on Nov. 3.
After hosting VCU at Lee Jackson Field on Aug. 25 in the first of two exhibition matches, the Zips will wrap up the preseason with a contest at No. 16 South Florida on Aug. 28.
After opening the 2009 campaign ranked No. 3 in the preseason NSCAA poll a year ago, the Zips were ranked No. 1 in the nation for the final 11 weeks leading up to the College Cup. The 2010 Zips, who will officially kick off their fall training schedule on Monday, Aug. 16, return eight of 11 starters from a team that matched an NCAA single-season record with 23 consecutive victories a year ago and advanced to the national championship game for the second time in school history.
The NCAA recognizes both the NSCAA and Soccer America polls in its final standings. Soccer America has not yet released its preseason rankings.
2010 NSCAA Preseason Poll
3. Wake Forest*
4. North Carolina*
8. UC Santa Barbara
12. Boston College
16. South Florida
17. St. John's
18. Ohio State*
23. North Carolina-Wilmington
24. Michigan State*
25. UC Irvine
*- 2010 UA regular-season opponent