DALLAS (NCBWA) Vanderbilt has been selected No. 1 nationally in the 18th annual 2015 National Collegiate Baseball Writers Division I preseason poll. It·s the first preseason No. 1 ranking for the Commodores, and Vandy becomes the 13th different school to hold down the initial post since the NCBWA Division I polls began in 1998.
Head Coach Tim Corbin guided the Commodores to their initial championship in 124 years of Division I mens intercollegiate athletics with 51 wins in 72 games and a best-of-three (two wins) topping of fellow first-time NCAA baseball finalist Virginia (No. 2 in the ·15 preseason survey) in 2014.
2014 NCAA World Series entry TCU is No. 3, while Southeastern Conference power LSU follows at four ahead of fellow SEC powerhouse Florida at No. 5 in this latest Top 35.
The poll voters come from 44 college baseball writers and related media persons from throughout the nation. After a preseason Top 35 listing, the remainder of the polls will feature a national Top 30 beginning with the Feb. 16 NCBWA DI survey.
Previous No. 1 entries on the preseason NCBWA rankings have been LSU in the 1998, 2001 and 2009 polls, Southern California (1999), Miami (Fla.) (2000), Stanford (2002), Texas (2003, 06, 10), Rice (2004, 07), Cal State Fullerton (2005, '14), Arizona State (2008), North Carolina (2009), TCU (2011), Florida (2012), and Arkansas (2013).
Last season, seven different schools were represented in the No 1 placement. Virginia led the NCBWA polls for a season-high eight weeks while Vandy achieved its first-ever No. 1 ranking by the group. Louisiana-Lafayette was ranked No. 1 on May 26 and June 3 for the initial time in school history. Oregon State (four weeks Feb. 17, May 5-12-19), Florida State (March 17), South Carolina (March 10), and Cal State Fullerton (preseason No. 1) also were top vote recipients for the 18 surveys in 2014.
The NCBWA continues its tradition of NCAA Division I polls with its 2015 preseason predictions and weekly surveys. Weekly polls will run from Feb. 16-June 25 with the finale following the 69th annual 2015 NCAA World Series in Omaha, Neb., at TD Ameritrade Park.
This current poll has representation by 11 different conferences among the baseball-playing schools in the 2015 NCAA Division I ranks. The polls of 2012 had a NCBWA-poll record 22 different DI conferences and independents rated at least one week while the 2014 surveys had 12 separate circuits among the ranked. For more information or to join the NCBWA, please go to www.ncbwa.com.
Founded in 1962, the NCBWA is dedicated to the advancement of college baseball. Membership is open to writers, broadcasters and publicists of the sport. Members receive a membership card, directory, newsletter updates and official votes in the Dick Howser Trophy, Regional Players of the Year and NCBWA All-America voting. The NCBWA also sponsors Division I Players of the Week, the Stopper of the Year, and publication and writing contests.