With a few weeks of competition left before Selection Sunday, the NCAA Division I Softball Championship Sport Committee announced its first top-10 ranking of the season during tonight’s Oregon vs. Arizona game.
The committee selected Florida as the No. 1 team in the country with games played through April 20. The Gators are 41-3 overall and 15-2 in SEC play. "While there is still a lot of softball left to be played, this ranking was a great exercise for the committee. We had a robust discussion surrounding several selection criteria and were able to utilize dialogue from the eight regional advisory committees to rank the teams who we feel have already built impressive resumes,” said Keisha Dunlap, chair of the committee and Senior Associate Commissioner at Conference USA.
“These rankings are a chance to spread awareness and exposure, and provide education and engagement to fans, media and the general public. We had great discussions regarding the teams and look forward to our next ranking in a few weeks.”
Arizona earned the second slot with a 43-3 overall record and 13-2 mark in Pac-12 play. Texas A&M is ranked No. 3 at 37-5 including a 11-3 record in SEC play. Florida State follows at No. 4 with a 41-3-1 record and unblemished 18-0 mark in ACC league competition.
Auburn rounds out the top five with a 37-7 record and a 10-5 record against its SEC opponents. The remainder of the top 10 includes Washington, Oregon, Minnesota, Tennessee and UCLA.
This is the first of two rankings the committee will unveil, with the second announcement occurring on May 6, during the Auburn vs. Alabama game. First pitch for that game is slated for 7:30 p.m. ET.
These ranking announcements will have no bearing on the final bracket, which will be revealed at 10 p.m. ET Sunday, May 14, on the NCAA Division I Softball Selection Show, aired on ESPNU.
The ranking is based on the criteria used to select and seed the 64 teams for the Division I Softball Championship and include strength of schedule, Rating Percentage Index, head-to-head competition, results versus common opponents, significant wins and losses and locations of contests. Additionally, input is provided by the regional advisory committees for consideration by the Division I Softball Committee.
Top 10 ranking (record through games played by April 20):
1. Florida (41-3)
2. Arizona (43-3)
3. Texas A&M (37-5)
4. Florida St. (41-3-1)
5. Auburn (37-7)
6. Washington (32-10)
7. Oregon (37-4)
8. Minnesota (40-3)
9. Tennessee (39-5)
10. UCLA (30-12)