DePaul Men's Soccer Looking to Extend BIG EAST Championship Streak
Aug. 11, 2010
CHICAGO - If the BIG EAST Conference preseason coaches' poll is accurate, DePaul is headed to its fifth-consecutive BIG EAST Championship tournament this season in men's soccer.
The league's coaches picked the Blue Demons to finish sixth in the Red Division, and the top six teams qualify for the postseason.
NCAA tournament qualifier St. John's was chosen to finish first in the Red Division while NCAA tournament team Connecticut is the favorite to repeat as Blue Division champion.
"We're excited about all the challenges that a new season brings, and the preseason poll gets it all started," said DePaul coach Craig Blazer. "If we pay attention to details and believe in what we're doing, we're going to have a very successful season.
"The poll is a starting point. Reality kicks in when we start playing games. In the nonconference season, we want to demonstrate the strength of the BIG EAST."
Four BIG EAST teams have been ranked in the NSCAA (National Soccer Coaches Association of America) preseason Top 25 poll. USF is No. 16 followed by No. 17 St. John's, No. 20 Louisville and No. 22 Connecticut.
"That (NSCAA poll) speaks volumes to the success of the BIG EAST," Blazer said. "Every year we have four or five top-quality programs recognized nationally. These are the hallmark programs.
"That's what we are aspiring to reach. We're among the teams in the next level of the BIG EAST battling to get into the Top 25 and get recognized in our conference."
After St. John's in the Red Division, the coaches selected NCAA tournament qualifier Louisville to finish second followed by USF (NCAA tournament second round), Villanova, Rutgers, DePaul, Syracuse and Cincinnati.
The coaches' poll chose NCAA second-round qualifier Notre Dame to finish second in the Blue Division followed by West Virginia, Georgetown, Providence, Seton Hall, Marquette and Pittsburgh.
Louisville All-American Colin Rolfe was named Preseason Offensive Player of the Year by the BIG EAST coaches and Notre Dame's Aaron Maund was tabbed as Preseason Defensive Player of the Year. The Preseason Goalkeeper of the Year was USF's Jeff Attinella.