Feb. 4, 2009
TUCSON, Ariz. – The University of Arizona baseball team has been tabbed to finish fifth in the Pacific-10 Conference in 2009 according to a vote of league coaches, released by the league office Wednesday morning.
Arizona State University, the league’s reigning champion, tallied three first place votes and edges out UCLA to top the poll. The Bruins have been picked second, and are followed by Stanford, Oregon State and Arizona.
Arizona collected one first place vote and finished with 56 total points in the poll, two behind Oregon State’s fourth place tally.
“It’s obvious that this league will be highly competitive once again,” Arizona head coach Andy Lopez said. “I don’t put a whole lot of stock into preseason rankings, but the Pac-10 is always one of the best conferences in the nation and that should prove to be the case again. We are excited to prepare our team for another competitive league race.”
The top five teams in the conference are separated by only 13 points. California checks in 14 points below the Wildcats in sixth place. Arizona collected one first place vote and finished with 56 total points in the poll, two behind Oregon State’s fourth place tally.
Rounding out the preseason poll are USC, Washington State, and Oregon, which be fielding a baseball team again for the first time in 28 years.
Joining Arizona State in the postseason last year was Arizona, California, College World Series participant Stanford, and UCLA. The 2008 season marked the 12th straight season the Pac-10 had qualified at least four of its nine teams for the NCAA Tournament. The Conference has also produced a CWS participant each year since 1997 and the Cardinal’s trip marked the 58th year that the Pac-10 has sent at least one team to Omaha.
Results of the poll are as follows. Nine points are awarded for the first-place vote, eight points for a second-place vote, and so on. Coaches are not allowed to vote for their own team.
Rank Team Points
1. Arizona State (3) 69
2. UCLA (3) 67
3. Stanford (1) 64
4. Oregon State (2) 58
5. Arizona (1) 56
6. California 42
7. USC 38
8. Washington State 24
9. Washington 23
10. Oregon 9
First place votes in parentheses