UCLA, Whittier College, Brown University Water Polo Teams Top 2015 Preseason Polls

Photo Courtesy: Sean Fornelli

BRIDGEPORT, Pa. — The University of California-Los Angeles, Whittier College and Brown University will open the 2015 men’s varsity season where they concluded the 2014 campaign – on top of the rankings – as the Bruins, Poets and Bears are ranked at No. 1 in the 2015 Men’s Varsity Preseason National Top 20, Division III Top 10 and Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) Top 10 Polls.

The trio lead polls which underwent likely the most change from one season to another in the history of the sport as the Bruins, Poets and Bears are among a select group to retain their positions from the close of the 2014 campaign.

Voted on by a panel of coaches from the CWPA, Western Water Polo Association (WWPA), MPSF, Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) and the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), the polls will be compiled and released on Wednesday during each week of the season through the week following the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Championship.

2015 Men’s Varsity National Top 20 (Preseason)

The 2014 National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Champion Bruins of theUniversity of California-Los Angeles will open the season on top of the sport as hte squad holds the No. 1 position in the 2015 Preseason National Top 20 Poll.

The Bruins (99 points), who fall one point shy of being a unanimous top selection, leads a Preseason Top 10 in which only three teams held onto their final spots from the 2014 season.

The University of Southern California (93 points) clings to the No. 2 slot after falling to the Bruins in the 2014 NCAA title tilt, while the University of California(90 points) jumps up to No. 3 after finishing last season at No. 5.  Stanford University (87 points), University of the Pacific (78 points), Long Beach State University (75 points), the University of California-Santa Barbara (66 points),Pepperdine University (54 points), the University of California-Irvine (53 points) and the University of California-San Diego (52 points) wrap-up an All-West Coast Top 10.

The sports’ Eastern contingent breaks into the Top 20 at No. 11 as defending Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) Champion Brown University (45 points) and league runner-up Princeton University (45 points) are tied just outside the Top 10.

The University of California-Davis (44 points), Loyola Marymount University(41 points) and the United States Naval Academy (26 points) rate at No. 13-to-15, respectively.

San Jose State University (17 points), which will field a men’s varsity water polo team for the first time since 1981, will restart its program with a national ranking as the Spartans are rated at No. 16 in the Preseason balloting.

St. Francis College Brooklyn (15 points) and the United States Air Force Academy (15 points) stand tied at No. 17, while the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (14 points) and Bucknell University (14 points) complete the Top 20 by tying at No. 19.

Harvard University (9 points), Whittier College (9 points), Santa Clara University (8 points) and California Baptist University (7 points) also received votes.

2015 Varsity Top 20 (Preseason)

Rank Team 2014 Final Poll Points
1  University of California-Los Angeles 1 99
2  University of Southern California 2 93
3  University of California 5 90
4  Stanford University 3 87
5  University of the Pacific 8 (T) 78
6  Long Beach State University 4 75
7  University of California-Santa Barbara 7 66
8  Pepperdine University 10 54
9  University of California-Irvine 12 53
10  University of California-San Diego 6 52
11 (T)  Brown University 8 (T) 45
11 (T)  Princeton University 11 45
13  University of California-Davis 13 44
14  Loyola Marymount University 14 (T) 41
15  United States Naval Academy 14 (T) 26
16  San Jose State University NR 17
17 (T)  Saint Francis College Brooklyn 16 15
17 (T)  United States Air Force Academy 18 15
19 (T)  Massachusetts Institute of Technology NR 14
19 (T)  Bucknell University 17 14
RV  Harvard University NR 9
RV  Whittier College RV 9
RV  Santa Clara University 19 8
RV  California Baptist University 20 7


2015 Men’s Varsity Division III Top 10 (Preseason)

The Poets of Whittier College (99 points) will open 2015 where they finished 2014 – on top of the National Division III Top 10 Poll.

The reigning Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC) champion, Whittier leads a Division III Top 10 which underwent minor changes from the final 2014 voting released on December 3.

Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges (90 points) is the first team to improve its position from the final 2014 rankings as the squad inches in front of former No. 2 and No. 3 Johns Hopkins University (89 points).

Chapman University (79 points) will open the season at No. 4, while theUniversity of Redlands (76 points), the Massachusetts Institute of Technology(76 points) and California Lutheran University (76 points) are engaged in a three-way tie at No. 5.

Pomona-Pitzer Colleges (69 points), the University of La Verne (64 points) andWashington & Jefferson College (24 points) complete the Top 10, with the duo of Occidental College (22 points) and Connecticut College (11 points) also receiving votes.

2015 Varsity Division III Top 10 (Preseason)

Rank Team 2014 Final Poll Points
1  Whittier College 1 99
2  Claremont-Mudd-Scripps Colleges 3 90
3  Johns Hopkins University 2 89
4  Chapman University 4 79
5 (T)  University of Redlands 5 76
5 (T)  Massachusetts Institute of Technology 6 76
5 (T)  California Lutheran University 7 76
8  Pomona-Pitzer Colleges 9 69
9  University of La Verne 8 64
10  Washington & Jefferson College RV 24
RV  Occidental College 10 22
RV  Connecticut College RV 11


2015 Men’s Varsity CWPA Top 10 (Preseason)

For the first time since 1986, Brown University (95 points) will enter a men’s varsity season as the hunted rather than the prey as the 2014 Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) champion Bears rate as the No. 1 selection in the 2015 Preseason CWPA Top 10 Poll.

Brown, which handled Princeton University by a 7-6 final in the CWPA Championship title game at theUnited States Naval Academy for the league’s 2014 crown and the program’s first National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Championship berth since 1990, is the lone league team to retain its ranking from the conclusion of the 2014 season.

Navy (94 points), which finished in Third Place at the league’s championship tournament last year in Annapolis, Md., moves up to No. 2 as the Midshipmen fall one point shy of tying the Bears for Preseason favorite status.

Princeton (86 points) slips back to No. 3, while Johns Hopkins University (81 points) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (77 points) lead a Division III charge up the rankings to take over at No. 4 and 5.  It marks the first time in the history of the league that two Division III programs are ranked in the Top Five of the league’s Top 10.

Bucknell University (72 points) and Harvard University (72 points) will enter 2015 tied at No. 6, while St. Francis College Brooklyn (67 points), George Washington University (60 points) and Fordham University (49 points) conclude the Top 10.

Iona College (11 points) and Mercyhurst University (11 points) also received votes.

2015 Varsity CWPA Top 10 (Preseason)

Rank Team 2014 Final Poll Points
1  Brown University 1 95
2  United States Naval Academy 3 94
3  Princeton University 2 86
4  Johns Hopkins University 6 81
5  Massachusetts Institute of Technology 10 77
6 (T)  Bucknell University 5 72
6 (T)  Harvard University 7 72
8  St. Francis College Brooklyn 4 67
9  George Washington University 8 60
10  Fordham University 9 49
RV  Iona College NR 11
RV  Mercyhurst University NR 11


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