A strong performance on the way to winning Santa Barbara Invite, coupled with a narrow win for Dartmouth at FWC, pushed UC San Diego into the new #1 spot. That didn’t take long. But how long can they hold the position?
#11 UC Santa Barbara proved themselves with wins over Wisconsin, BYU, and Cal, and a competitive matchup against UCSD. They led in the first half, and Julia Kwasnick has asserted herself as a potential All-American.
Both Wisconsin and Washington made it to the semifinals of Santa Barbara Invite even though they weren’t the top seeds in their own pools. Those efforts were part of what pushed them to #14 and #15, respectively.
Cal Poly SLO‘s rise to #19 is a nod to their two wins over UCLA and at-the-time upset of Stanford. Had they not dropped their season opener, getting thumped by Chicago, they might have risen even higher!
#21 UCLA made the jump back into the rankings, anchored by Katherine Jordak and Malia Smith. They split with Stanford on the weekend, and played very close with both SLO and Washington.
Stanford might be in more of a rebuild than expected after losing an impressive crop of veterans. They stumbled out of the gates and tumbled down the rankings from #9 to #22 — tied lowest the program has ever been ranked in our poll.1
#24 South Carolina moves into the rankings this week for the first time ever after winning Clutch Classic. They were on the radar after a good fall, and while they didn’t play a tough slate this past weekend, they shut out all three teams they faced on Saturday. Their toughest matchup was an 8-7 win over a typically solid Clemson squad.
BYU and California drop out of the rankings this week. BYU lost handily to every ranked team they faced, while Cal went 2-5 at SBI while playing pretty open lines.
D-I Men’s Power Rankings
Dropped from rankings:Colorado State (17), Stanford (20)
No surprises at the top, where North Carolina remains #1 after winning Carolina Kickoff and Oregon remains #3 after winning Flat Tail Open.
Speaking of Kickoff, NC State earned five pretty comfortable W’s before a competitive 15-12 loss to UNC in the final. That was enough to justify moving them up to #10.
BYU takes the open spot in the top 10 at #9, going undefeated at Santa Barbara Invite. That includes a victory over #11 Cal Poly SLO, the only team to take one off SLOCORE. They look like an elite outfit.
The Northwest did well for itself at SBI, and now Victoria is at #13 and UBC is at #15. Both made the semifinals and UBC reached the final, an impressive run for the no. 20 seed. Could two Canadian men’s teams end up in bid-earning range?
Despite missing star Sam Cook, #16 Southern California made headway at Santa Barbara Invite. They may be top heavy, but they have the makings of a tough out, earning wins over Stanford and Washington on the way to the semifinals.
A rocky performance from an incomplete Washington team sent them from #7 down to #17, as they were upset by Southern Cal in a dramatic pool play matchup and were eliminated in quarterfinals by Cal Poly SLO. They also lost to Cal in the fifth place game.
The other top 10 team to tumble was Auburn, who moved from #9 to #22 after losing on double game to LSU in the final of T-Town Throwdown. What was supposed to be warm up event for the top team in the Southeast turned out to be a classic trap. For their part, preseason bubble team LSU entered the rankings at #21.
Surprise pool play losses for UNC Wilmington and Emory sent them down the rankings, landing at #23 and #24, respectively. UNCW lost to Georgia Tech, while Emory was taken down by Notre Dame. Their best victories — save UNCW defeating an Anders Olsen-less Emory to end the weekend — might have come in the bracket, when coincidentally Emory outplayed GT and Wilmington bested Notre Dame.
Dropping from the rankings were Colorado State and Stanford after disappointing returns at Santa Barbara Invite. Hibida went 4-3, including a narrow victory over UT Dallas and a loss to Cal; there’s still work to do to assert themselves in the crowded South Central. Stanford was outshone by several West Coast rivals, bested by in-state foes UC Santa Barbara and USC in addition to two Northwest squads.
Carleton GoP remains at #4 after an unspectacular Carolina Kickoff, where they went 2-5. They did earn a 13-9 victory of Richmond, though, which helped them hold their spot.
Speaking of, Richmond falls to #8 after losing to GoP and splitting with Temple on their way to an eleventh place finish.
Lewis & Clark’s 15-11 win over former #23 Puget Sound was their most notable result from Flat Tail Open. It wasn’t enough to get them in, but did pull Puget Sound out of the rankings. That change created room for St. Olaf at #25.
Tied with the first ever week of our rankings, in the fall of 2013. ↩
Keith Raynor is a Senior Editor and the Business Development Manager at Ultiworld. He co-hosts our Deep Look podcast and does play-by-play and color commentary. He coaches UConn Rise, the college's women's team. You can reach him by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or on Twitter (@FullFieldHammer).