Time to be accountable for pre-season picks.By J.R. Eskilson
Accountability is a major part of sports. Players are held responsible for their duties on the field. Coaches are held responsible for their tactical decisions. Well, pundits are no different; so here is the run down of pre-season favorites from every conference and the actual league winner.
American East Conference: Projected winner: Boston University. Actual winner: New Hampshire
Atlantic 10: Projected: Dayton. Actual: Dayton
Atlantic Coast Conference: Projected: North Carolina. Actual: North Carolina and Wake Forest.
Atlantic Sun Conference: Projected: Jacksonville. Actual: Campbell.
Big East Conference: Projected: Notre Dame (Blue). St. John’s (Red). Actual: UCONN (Blue). Louisville (Red).
Big South Conference: Projected: Winthrop. Actual: Coastal Carolina.
Big Ten Conference: Projected: Indiana. Actual: Ohio State.
Big West Conference: Projected: UCSB. Actual: UCSB.
Colonial Athletic Association: Projected: George Mason. Actual: UNC Wilmington.
Conference USA: Projected: Kentucky. Actual: Tulsa.
Horizon League: Projected: UIC. Actual: Butler.
Ivy League: Projected: Dartmouth. Actual: TBD (Harvard currently in first with a game to play)
Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference: Projected: Loyola (Md.). Actual: Iona.
Mid-American Conference: Projected: Akron. Actual: Akron.
Missouri Valley Conference: Projected: Creighton. Actual: Missouri State.
Mountain Pacific Sports Federation: Projected: Denver. Actual: Sacramento State.
Northeast Conference: Projected: Monmouth. Actual: Monmouth.
PAC-10: Projected: California. Actual: UCLA
Patriot League: Projected: Colgate. Actual: Bucknell.
Southern Conference: Projected: Elon. Actual: Wofford.
Summit League Conference: Projected: UMKC. Actual: Oakland.
West Coast Conference: Projected: San Francisco. Actual: San Diego.
And since journalists should be held to the same level of accountability, time to take a look at my pre-season College Cup picks.
Dartmouth: Currently tied for second in the Ivy League. Likely to make the tournament. Anything is possible from there.
Wake Forest: ACC League Co-Champions with North Carolina. Probably will be a seeded team in the tournament.
California: Started off the season 7-2. Then a couple of league losses turned into a 1-6-1 record over the last eight games. The Golden Bears are out of post-season contention. I still believe a West Coast school will be in the Final Four. (UCSB or UCLA are the odds on favorites.)
Wisconsin: This was my gut pick with no statistical backing. They will need to win the Big Ten tournament to qualify for the tournament. Highly unlikely they will make it.
Goal.com’s Top 25
Rankings through Nov. 2
1.) Akron 18-0-0 (Next up: MAC Tourney, Nov. 13) Previous Rank:1
2.) North Carolina 13-2-2 (Next up: ACC Tourney, Nov. 11) PR:2
3.) Wake Forest 13-3-2 (Next up: ACC Tourney, Nov. 11) PR:5
4.) UCLA 10-3-3 (Next up: San Diego State, Nov. 14) PR: 4
5.) Maryland 12-4-2 (Next up: ACC Tourney, Nov. 11) PR: 3
6.) UCSB 15-3-2 (Next up: Big West Tourney, Nov. 11) PR: 6
7.) South Florida 13-3-3 (Next up: TBD) PR: 7
8.) Connecticut 11-3-3 (Next up:TBD) PR: 8
9.) Harvard 12-3-1 (Next up: Penn., Nov. 14) PR: 9
10.) Northwestern 10-3-4 (Next up: Big Ten tourney, Nov. 11) PR: 10
11.) Virginia 12-3-2 (Next up: ACC tourney, Nov. 11) PR:11
12.) Louisville 13-2-3 (Next up: Big East Final Four, Nov. 13-15) PR: 12
13.) Butler 12-2-1 (Next up: Horizon League tourney, Nov. 13-15) PR: 13
14.) Monmouth 15-1-1 (Next up: Northeast Conference tourney, Nov. 13-15) PR: 14
15.) Stanford 10-4-2 (Next up: California, Nov. 14) PR: 15
16.) North Carolina State 12-5-1 (Next up: ACC tourney, Nov. 11) PR: 16
17.) Boston College 11-7-0 (Next up: ACC tourney, Nov. 11) PR: 23
18.) Duke 12-5-0 (Next up: ACC Tourney, Nov. 6) PR: 18
19.) San Diego 12-4-1 (Next up: St. Mary’s, Nov. 14) PR: 19
20.) Tulsa 11-4-2 (Next up: Conference USA tourney, TBA) PR: 21
21.) Charlotte 11-3-4 (Next up: Atlantic 10 tourney, Nov. 12) PR: 17
22.) UAB 12-4-1 (Next up: Conference USA tourney, TBA) PR 25
23.)Ohio State 8-4-4 (Next up: Big Ten tourney, Nov. 13-15) PR: Unranked
24.) Notre Dame 10-7-2 (Next up: Big East Final Four, Nov. 13-15) PR: UN
25.) Missouri State 12-3-2 (Next up: Missouri Valley Conference tourney, Nov. 13) PR: UN
Team of the Week:
GK: Sam Hayden, UCSB. Set the record for most shut outs in a season by a UCSB keeper.
DEF: Aaron Maund, Notre Dame. Game tying goal in the 83rd minute in the Big East Tourney.
DEF: J.T. Murray, Louisville. Winning penalty kick vs DePaul.
DEF: Jordan Graye, UNC. Game tying goal vs Clemson.
MID: Matt Marcin, Providence. Game winning goal in overtime against UCONN to keep season alive.
MID: Mark Cintron, Providence. Goal and assist vs Villanova.
MID: Levi Houapeu, UMBC. He leads the nation in goals and assists! Plus he had a game winning goal this week.
MID: Nate Robinson, University of Detroit Mercy. Three assists, one goal against UIC.
FWD: Ashley McInnes, Tulsa. One goal, two assists vs UCF.
FWD: Devin Deldo, Cal State Northridge. Two goals vs UC Irvine.
FWD: Billy Schuler, UNC. Game winning goal (and assist) against Clemson.
Television Game of the Week:
Big East Tourney Final, Sunday, Nov. 15th, 12:00 PM (ET) CBS College Sports.
Follow my twitter on Monday for live results on NCAA tournament pairings.
J.R. Eskilson writes a weekly NCAA column on Tuesday for Goal.com. Follow the College Soccer Professor at twitter.com/NCAAsoccer.
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