JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Aug. 28, 2019) – With the cross country season set to get underway on Friday, the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) released its preseason regional rankings, and the ETSU men were ranked ninth in the South Region.
“We are pleased to be ranked ninth in the South Region,” said ETSU cross country head coach George Watts. “For the most part, the preseason rankings mirror last year's regional finish. Most of the teams return the majority of their runners. We need to make gains on our competition and the next step is to become a consistent top-five team.”
Ole Miss sits atop the regional rankings with Florida State, Alabama, Middle Tennessee State, Georgia Tech, Tennessee, Belmont and North Florida rounding out the top-eight spots. The Bucs enter the 2019 season ahead of Florida (No. 10), Samford (No. 12), Georgia (No. 13) and Vanderbilt (No. 14).
The Bucs finished ninth out of 24 teams at last year’s NCAA South Regional with Ben Varghese (Kingsport, Tenn.) earning a spot to the NCAA Championships with a fifth-place finish in the regional.
On Tuesday, the ETSU men were picked to finish second in the Preseason Southern Conference Coaches Poll. The Bucs return their top five runners from last season’s conference meet, including three all-conference runners and an all-freshman selection.
The ETSU men’s and women’s teams begin their season this Friday, Aug. 30 when the Buccaneers head to Boone, N.C. for the Covered Bridge Open.
For more information on Buccaneer men’s and women’s cross country, visit ETSUBucs.com.