DALLAS (NCBWA) – The National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association continues its tradition of NCAA Division I polls for the 19th year with its 2016 weekly surveys. Florida tops this year’s preseason poll after finishing No. 3 in the final 2015 rankings. It is the second time in the past five years that the Gators have held the top spot, as they ranked first to begin the 2012 season.Florida is among nine SEC teams that are ranked in the preseason poll, more than any other league. The SEC also produced four of the top seven schools, with Vanderbilt at No. 3, Texas A&M at No. 4 and LSU at No. 7. Second-ranked Louisville leads a trio of ACC teams in the top eight, with Miami (Fla.) placing sixth and Virginia coming in at No. 8. The Pac-12 had five teams ranked in the poll, while the Big 12 had four.
The poll voters come from 42 college baseball writers and related media persons from throughout the nation. After a preseason Top 35 listing, the remainder of the polls will feature a national Top 30 beginning with the Feb. 22 NCBWA DI survey.
Previous No. 1 entries on the preseason NCBWA rankings have been LSU in the 1998, 2001 and 2009 polls, Southern California (1999), Miami (Fla.) (2000), Stanford (2002), Texas (2003, 06, 10), Rice (2004, 07), Cal State Fullerton (2005, '14), Arizona State (2008), North Carolina (2009), TCU (2011), Florida (2012), Arkansas (2013) and Vanderbilt (2015).
The current survey has representation by 11 different conferences among the 302 baseball-playing schools in the 2016 NCAA Division I ranks. The rankings of 2015 had 16 different DI conferences rated at least one week.