UConn No. 1 again in women’s preseason poll

UConn was the unanimous No. 1 in The Associated Press’ preseason women’s basketball poll. The Huskies received all 35 first-place votes from the national media panel.

It’s the 10th time that UConn has been the top team in the preseason. Six of those years they went on to win the title, including last season.

Here’s a breakdown of the preseason poll:

CONFERENCE BREAKDOWN: The Big Ten and Atlantic Coast Conference lead the way with five teams in the preseason Top 25. It’s the most for the Big Ten since the conference also had five in 2004. Conference newcomer Maryland leads the way at No. 10. The Terrapins are joined by Michigan State (14), Nebraska (16), Iowa (19) and Rutgers (24). Notre Dame is the top team in the ACC, ranked third. Duke (7), Louisville (12), North Carolina (13) and Syracuse (24) follow. The Pac-12, Big 12 and SEC each have four teams, giving the power five conferences 22 of the 25 teams in the poll. Top-ranked UConn represents the American while Big East’s DePaul and the Atlantic 10’s Dayton round out the Top 25.

COMING IN: Six teams that weren’t in the final poll last season are in the preseason Top 25 starting with No. 9 Texas. Also unranked at the end of last season were: Iowa, Oregon State, Dayton, UCLA, Rutgers and Syracuse.

WELCOME BACK: Scott Rueck has the Oregon State Beavers back in the Top 25 for the first time since the final poll of 1996. The Beavers have all five starters from last season’s team that reached the second round of the NCAA tournament.

”It’s great to get some national recognition,” Oregon State coach Scott Rueck said. ”We are coming off a great year and we got to do something we’ve never done before. I know the kids will see the ranking plastered everywhere but I know we’ll be grounded. It will just give us a little bigger target on us this year.”

FAMILIAR TERRITORY: Connecticut has been the No. 1 team in the preseason poll 10 times now, only trailing Tennessee which was No. 1 12 times since the poll began in 1976. The Huskies have gone on to win the national championship in six of those years (2000, 2002, 2004, 2009, 2010, 2014).

MILESTONES: This is only the second time that Georgia isn’t ranked in the preseason Top 25 since 1981. The Lady Bulldogs were also not in the first poll in 2008.

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