NEW ORLEANS - The 2012 cross country season is just about to begin and once again the University of Colorado men's and women's programs are starting off the season on a familiar note as both teams are ranked in the USTFCCCA Top 30 Preseason Poll.
The men's team is ranked fifth overall and the women are 13th. Both teams aren't far from their positions at the 2011 NCAA Championships as the men placed third and the women were 11th. The regional rankings came out on Monday afternoon and had CU in very familiar spots with the men ranked third behind BYU and New Mexico and the women second to Weber State.
CU's men are the top Pac-12 program in the poll, recording 297 points for fifth-place, just two away from fourth-place Oklahoma (299). Wisconsin earned top billing with 357 points and nabbed 10 first-place votes. Oklahoma State is second overall (345 points and one first-place vote) and BYU took third in the poll with 338 points (one first-place vote). Colorado returns one All-American to the line-up in Joe Bosshard. He will be joined by all-region honorees Martin Medina and Ammar Moussa.
On the women's side, Oregon earned the top spot with 345 points (four first-place votes), but conference foe Washington was just two points behind with 343 points and five first-place votes. Georgetown was third (337), Florida State took fourth (334) and Iowa State rounded out the top five with 289 points. The women return All-American Shalaya Kipp to the roster, as well as two All-Pac-12 Second Team members Lara Darco and Rachel Baptista.
The Buffs will start their 2012 season on Saturday, Sept. 1 with the Alumni/Open/Time Trial. The women's 5.8 kilometer race starts at 8:30 a.m. and the men's 8k race will follow at 9 a.m.