The 2018-19 Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Division II Top 25 Coaches' Preseason Poll was released on Thursday (Nov. 1), and Ashland University's women's basketball team is expected to once again be one of the top teams in the country.
The Eagles begin the new season at No. 2 in the WBCA poll, having received four first-place votes. Since 2012, Ashland has been ranked in the preseason poll six times – No. 1 in 2012 and 2017, No. 15 in 2013 and 2015, No. 5 in 2016 and No. 2 in 2018.
All-time in the official coaches' poll, preseason, regular season and postseason combined, the Eagles have been in the top 25 on 87 occasions, the top 10 71 times and the top five 64 times. Ashland has been in the top 25 in 52 consecutive polls, the top 10 in 46 straight polls, and the top five in 35 consecutive polls.
Ashland is one of two Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference teams in the preseason WBCA poll, along with No. 13 Grand Valley State.
The first D2SIDA preseason media national poll has Ashland slotted No. 6. In the 2018-19 GLIAC preseason poll, the Eagles are picked to finish second in the South Division.
In 2017-18, Ashland's women were 36-1 overall and 20-0 in the GLIAC. The Eagles were the NCAA Division II runner-up, and winners of GLIAC regular-season, GLIAC Tournament and Midwest Regional tournament championships. In the last seven seasons, Ashland has two national titles, two national finalist finishes, an overall record of 217-24 (.900), and is the first program in GLIAC women's basketball history to win both five regular-season and five tournament titles in a seven-year period.
2018-19 WBCA POLL RANKINGS: No. 2 (preseason).
ASHLAND UNIVERSITY WOMEN'S BASKETBALL ALL-TIME NCAA DIVISION II TOP 25 COACHES' POLL RANKINGS (INCLUDING PRESEASON)
Weeks in rankings: 87
Weeks in Top 10: 71
Weeks in Top 5: 64
Weeks at No. 1: 42
Most consecutive weeks in rankings: 52 (current)
Most consecutive weeks in Top 10: 46 (current)
Most consecutive weeks in Top 5: 35 (current)
Most consecutive weeks at No. 1: 29
Highest ranking: No. 1 (last on March 4, 2018)
Highest final ranking: No. 1 (2012-13 and 2016-17)
Full seasons in rankings: 4 (2012-13, 2015-16, 2016-17 and 2017-18)
Full seasons in Top 10: 3 (2012-13, 2016-17 and 2017-18)
Full seasons in Top 5: 3 (2012-13, 2016-17 and 2017-18)
Current streak: 52