NEW ORLEANS – In the final USTFCCCA Coaches poll of the 2013 season, the University of Colorado cross country teams are both ranked in the top five. The men’s team is third heading into the NCAA Championships, while the women are fifth overall.
The men fell two spots from first overall after placing second last Saturday at the NCAA Mountain Region Championships. The women moved up five spots from 10th to fifth after winning the regional crown.
In the women’s poll, Providence moved back into the top position with 353 points, as well as six first-place votes. Former No. 1 Arizona dropped one spot to second with five first-place votes and 352 points. Arkansas picked up the final first-place vote and 337 points for third. Florida State is this week’s fourth-place team (318) and CU is fifth with 286 points; three more than Georgetown’s total of 283 points.
Northern Arizona moved into the top spot of the men’s poll after winning the NCAA Mountain Region Championship. NAU recorded 353 points and six of the 12 first-place votes this week. Oklahoma State is the second-highest ranked team this week after recording 347 points and four first-place votes. The Buffs recorded 343 points this week and picked up the two remaining first-place votes for third overall. Rounding out the top five in the poll are fellow Pac-12 teams Stanford (322) and Oregon (309), which are fourth and fifth, respectively.
The CU women have been steadily improving this year. They started off with a seventh-place finish at NCAA Pre-Nationals, before placing second at the Pac-12 Championships by just six points behind the then-top-ranked Arizona Wildcats. Last weekend at regionals, they dominated the field, defeating then-No. 8 New Mexico 29-64. The Buffs placed all seven of their runners in the top 15.
The CU men have been very consistent this year. They won pre-nationals and then went on to take their third-straight Pac-12 Conference title. They placed second overall at regionals by just eight points to NAU (61-69) last weekend.
The NCAA Championships are Saturday, Nov. 23 in Terre Haute, Ind. The championships will be streamed live starting at 10 a.m. MT with the men’s 10k race. The women’s 6k run will follow the conclusion of the men’s race. This will be the CU men’s 22nd straight appearance at NCAAs and it is the women’s 21st time in 22 years at the meet.