The Big Ten conference announced their preseason coaches poll on Monday and Rutgers was picked to finish third in the 2018 season. Here is the full poll:
1. Penn State
2. Ohio State
14. Michigan State
Last season, Rutgers finished tied for fourth place with Penn State in the Big Ten with a 6-2-3 conference record.
The top three schools in the 2018 preseason poll were also included in the United Soccer Coaches NCAA Division I Women National Preseason Ranking, which came out last week. Penn State opened at #4 in the country, Ohio State is #23rd and Rutgers sits at #24 to start the 2018 season. Rutgers ended last season at #22 with a 13-2-6 final record, losing to West Virginia in overtime in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
In addition, three Scarlet Knights were listed on the Big Ten preseason honors list. They are reigning Big Ten Freshman of the Year, forward Amirah Ali, as well as a pair from the vaunted back line of Rutgers, senior Kenie Wright and junior Chantelle Swaby. With heralded goalkeeper Casey Murphy no longer on the banks, Wright and Swaby will lead a veteran back line that looks to maintain dominance this season, after leading the NCAA in goals-against-average and shutout percentage in 2017.
The Rutgers women’s soccer team opens it’s 2018 campaign this Friday, August 17th at home against Delaware. We have a season preview coming later this week, so stay tuned for more coverage on the program.