News release from the University of Saint Francis Athletics:
USF Cougars are voted NO. 4 in NAIA Basketball Preseason Top 25
(October 27, 2015) – The University of Saint Francis men’s basketball will open the 52nd season in program history this Friday as the NAIA No. 4 team in the 2015-16 Preseason NAIA Division II Coaches’ Top 25 Poll released Tuesday afternoon.
The No. 4 ranking is the highest for USF in the preseason poll since the Cougars were No. 1 in the 2010 poll coming off a national championship in 2009-10. This is the second time USF has been the No. 4 pick, the other coming in 1999. The Cougars were No. 7 in the final 2014-15 poll.
Head Coach Chad LaCross will send his NAIA 4th-ranked Cougars against Madonna University this Friday in the first day of the Cincinnati Christian Classic on Oct. 30. USF will play Cincinnati Christian on Sun., Nov. 1, then focuses on an early-season showdown with defending champion and No. 1-ranked Cornerstone University at 8 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 7. USF non-conference Top 25 opponents including No. 10 IU-East in a game that will be played at Bankers Life Fieldhouse at 10 p.m. on Dec. 22, No. 23 Southeastern (FL) and No. 25 Warner (FL).
USF was one of four NAIA Top 25 teams from the Crossroads League – No. 2 Indiana Wesleyan University, No. 14 Grace College and No. 22 Bethel College. Mt. Vernon Nazarene University was No. 38 in the received votes category.
USF senior forward Austin Fox, junior guard Kegan Comer and sophomore forward/center Bryce Lienhoop were named to the Preseason All-Crossroads League Team. Redshirt-freshman Perry Poindexter was named to the Preseason CL All-Freshman Team. The Cougars finished 27-8 overall, 14-4 in CL regular season action for second place in 2014-15. USF was picked to finish second in Crossroads League competition by coaches back in September. Two-time defending champ Indiana Wesleyan University was picked No. 1, No. 2 in the Preseason NAIA Top 25 Poll on Tuesday.