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Alberto Camargo | NCAA.com | September 14, 2022

Wake Forest climbs to No. 2 and more takeaways from the latest men's soccer rankings

Clemson defeats Washington, secures 2021 Men's College Cup

United Soccer Coaches has released its latest DI men's soccer poll, and it has not wavered from Clemson in the top spot. The Tigers remain perfect on the season, though the chasing pack has shuffled around considerably.

FULL RANKINGS: United Soccer Coaches DI men's soccer top 25

Here are three things I noticed from this week's top 25:

ACC showdown in the works

Wake Forest men's soccer

There may have not been any change at the top of the rankings, but there is now a tie for second place. Wake Forest has moved up two places into a tie for second with Stanford. At a perfect five wins from five, the Demon Deacons are one of just a handful of perfect teams remaining, along with Clemson, Duke, Charlotte and Dayton.

This means that — barring any upsets in the meantime — the Tigers and Deacons will meet on Sept. 24 in a colossal 1-versus-2 matchup in Clemson, South Carolina. Wake Forest leads the all-time series at 23-20-8, but has just eight wins in 22 games on the road. Their most recent meeting came in Winston-Salem, where the Tigers prevailed 2-1 on the way to their program’s third national championship.

Come Sept. 24, this conference battle could mean a lot more than just one in the win column for either side. These are two teams college soccer fans should expect to see deep into the postseason.

The fall of Georgetown

Georgetown men's soccer celebrating goal

Speaking of a team that made a deep postseason run in 2021, Georgetown’s 2022 continues to spiral. At 1-2-2, the Hoyas have fallen entirely out of the top 25 after starting the season ranked No. 2. 

One win from five games is far from the start to the season the Hoyas would have wanted, but it’s reasonable given the strength of schedule. Three ranked opponents in short order would be tough on any team. Between No. 10 Pittsburgh, No. 9 Denver and No. 8 Maryland, the Hoyas are 0-1-2, with a 5-2 win over High Point the only — high point in Georgetown’s season so far.

It’s far too early to write this team off with conference play on the horizon. The level of opposition may fall in Big East play, but it will give Georgetown a chance to build up confidence again before the postseason.

New boys Portland will have an immediate test

Portland men's soccer

The largest mover of the week was Portland, who climbed from receiving no votes to No. 13, mostly on the back of a 2-0 win vs. then-No. 15 UCLA on Sept. 10. The Pilots are undefeated after five games, including a 3-3 tie against then-No. 21 Indiana on Aug. 30.

Portland’s rapid rise and flashy new ranking will come into question almost immediately as the Pilots travel to Denver on Friday. It’s the ninth all-time meeting between the programs and Denver has won the last two clashes. Portland has a chance to prove its worth at No. 13 and pull off a second consecutive upset, while the Pioneers will look for yet another win over a ranked opponent this season.

See the full rankings below:

Rank School PRev 1st votes total points w-l-7
1 Clemson 1 7 199 5-0-0
2 Wake Forest 4 0 181 5-0-0
2 Stanford 2 0 181 4-0-1
4 Washington 3 0 175 4-0-1
5 Duke 7 0 165 4-0-0
6 Kentucky 5 1 158 4-0-1
7 Marshall 8 0 154 4-1-0
8 Maryland 14 0 140 3-1-1
9 Denver 6 0 135 4-1-1
10 Pittsburgh 10 0 133 4-1-0
11 Charlotte 13 0 121 4-0-0
12 Tulsa 20 0 102 3-0-1
13 Portland NR 0 90 3-0-2
14 Akron 9 0 83 4-1-0
15 Indiana NR 0 80 2-1-1
16 Syracuse 24 0 76 4-0-1
17 Dayton 18 0 58 4-0-0
18 UCSB NR 0 51 4-1-1
19 Missouri State 16 0 49 3-0-2
20 Butler 12 0 45 3-1-0
21 Lipscomb 17 0 42 4-0-1
22 Ohio State NR 0 37 4-0-1
23 UNC Greensboro 19 0 33 4-0-1
24 Xavier 25 0 24 5-0-1
25 UCLA 15 0 18 3-2-0
Also receiving votes: SMU (14), North Carolina (9), UMBC (9), Louisville (9), Creighton (6), Duquesne (6), UMass (6), Georgetown (3), Vermont (3), Florida Gulf Coast (2), Florida International (2), Georgia State (1).
 

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