KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Northwood (Fla.) was the unanimous selection at No. 1 for the second-straight week in the eighth edition of the 2011 – 12 NAIA Division II Men’s Basketball Coaches’ Top 25 Poll, announced Monday by the national office. The Seahawks, who pulled in 343 total points, took over sole possession of The Sun Conference after a 71-64 victory over then-No. 14 St. Thomas (Fla.) on Feb. 2. Northwood enters its contest against Webber International (Fla.) on Monday with a seven-game winning streak.
The next two teams held their positions with No. 2 Oregon Tech and third-ranked Davenport (Mich.). The Hustlin’ Owls, who captured 330 points, will face No. 9 Northwest (Wash.) on Saturday after a date with Evergreen State (Wash.) on Friday. For the fourth-straight week and seventh time this year, Davenport locked down the third spot with 320 points.
Standing with a 22-3 record, Dordt (Iowa) slides up one slot to No. 4 with 312 points. No. 5 Grace (Ind.) improved three positions with 298 points. That surge up the ranking was the highest this week for any team within the poll.
Movement was very minimal with two teams making a three-spot push up: Grace and No. 6 (tie) Cardinal Stritch (Wish.). The Wolves have won five-straight games and have run away with the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference. With two regular-season weeks remaining, they own a 4.0 game lead. Overall, 14 programs either stayed the same or shifted only one spot.
No. 23 Saint Mary (Kan.) and No. 25 Warner (Fla.) are the newcomers this week. The Spires are in their highest position since No. 20 on Feb. 20, 2001. They have gone 10-1 in their last 11 games to pull within one contest of Kansas Collegiate Athletic Conference-leader No. 6 (tie) McPherson (Kan.). Warner was ranked in each poll this year until sitting out the Jan. 30 edition.
These two schools replace Southwestern (Kan.) (No. 23) and Daemen (N.Y.) (No. 25) from the poll this week.
The Mid-Central College Conference and The Sun Conference are the leaders with four programs apiece included in the Top 25. The Cascade Collegiate Conference and Great Plains Athletic Conference both placed three schools in the ranking. Overall, 11 conferences and independents are represented this week.
The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences and independents. The ninth regular-season Division II Men’s Basketball Coaches’ Top 25 Poll will be announced on Feb. 13.
NOTES: (All information dates back to 1999 – 2000) There are 12 teams to be ranked in all nine polls this year (including preseason)… Five teams boast the most wins currently with 23… There are three teams to be ranked in the No. 1 spot this year (Northwood (Fla.), Oregon Tech and Indiana Wesleyan)… There have been 45 different teams to be ranked at least once this season… No. 5 Grace (Ind.) has been in the top 10 in all nine polls this year – before this season, the Lancers had not reached the top 10 since the 1992-93 season… No. 9 Northwest (Wash.) was the last undefeated team to lose, with that setback coming on Jan. 6, 2012 after the Eagles started 14-0… No. 2 Oregon Tech has spent 17-straight polls ranked in the top 10, dating back to Jan. 10, 2011… Embry-Riddle (Fla.) owns the most No. 1 rankings since 2000 with 17; Oregon Tech is next with 13, followed by Oklahoma Wesleyan and former NAIA member Walsh (Ohio) at 12 mentions each; Northwood is right behind with eight listings… Oregon Tech is listed with the longest active streak in the Top 25 at 84-straight weeks – the last time the Hustlin’ Owls were not ranked was on Jan. 11, 2005… In second place is Northwood with 49-consecutive mentions and right behind is Davenport (Mich.) with 33-straight.
|RANK||LAST WEEK||SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES)||2011 – 12 RECORD||TOTAL POINTS|
|1||1||Northwood (Fla.) (13)||23-2||343|
|T6||9||Cardinal Stritch (Wis.)||21-5||279|
|12||10||Warner Pacific (Ore.)||19-6||213|
|13||14||St. Thomas (Fla.)||16-7||201|
|16||15||Briar Cliff (Iowa)||18-7||186|
|17||17||Valley City State (N.D.)||20-6||174|
|18||19||St. Ambrose (Iowa)||18-8||155|
|20||21||Saint Francis (Ind.)||18-8||139|
|23||RV||Saint Mary (Kan.)||19-4||102|
Others receiving votes: Goshen (Ind.) 41; Daemen (N.Y.) 40; Tennessee Wesleyan 36; Madonna (Mich.) 29; Midland (Neb.) 17; Embry-Riddle (Fla.) 16; Southern Oregon 15; Dakota State (S.D.) 12; Ashford (Iowa) 12; Southwestern (Kan.) 9; Cal Maritime 8; Reinhardt (Ga.) 6; Huntington (Ind.) 1; Cornerstone (Mich.) 1; Morningside (Iowa) 1.