After being ranked No. 14 nationally last week, the UConn women’s soccer team was picked fifth in the American Athletic Conference Coaches Poll.
Last season, the Huskies went undefeated in conference play, with their only non-win coming in a 0-0 tie at SMU. They won both the regular season championship and the conference tournament and were one of just two AAC teams to reach the NCAA Tournament.
While they lost a lot of talent to graduation, most notably Rachel Hill, Stephanie Ribeiro and Emily Armstrong, the Huskies still have a strong core that was boosted by a strong incoming class of both freshmen and transfers.
Memphis received the top spot with 74 points (five first place votes) with SMU not far behind with 60 points (three first place votes). Cincinnati and USF come in at third and fourth, respectively.
While the No. 14 ranking was too high by the United Soccer Coaches, fifth is too low. In the four-year history of the American, UConn has never finished lower than fourth at the end of the regular season, which occurred in 2013 and 2014. However, in 2014, the Huskies still won the conference tournament.
By no means should UConn be picked as the top team in the conference. But fifth disregards the strength and consistency that Len Tsantris’ program has achieved over its history.