The USILA and Nike/IL Polls for NCAA D1 Men’s Lacrosse have been released. Quint Kessenich has dropped his Top 20. This week it’s a Top 63. Let’s break down the Polls and rankings, and see if they are serious!
I will add in my ranking of the Top 20 to provide an alternative view on the situation.
Main Photo Credit: Craig Chase
Rank | USILA Poll | Nike/IL Poll | Quint’s Top 20 | My Ranking
1) Notre Dame – Notre Dame – Notre Dame - No one is undefeated anymore, so there should be some differing opinion on who is #1, right? WRONG. Since Maryland and Cornell lost this past week, EACH poll simply bumped them down and bumped Notre Dame up. I’m not buying it, and I’m keeping Cornell at #1, and blaming their loss on the snow storm… and Bucknell being really good. There, I said it.
2) Maryland – Maryland – Maryland – Seriously? ALL three polls have the Terps at #2 after losing to UNC? Wow. At least the polls are consistent! I’ll give Loyola the #2 spot, and yes I know they have two losses. Still my #2 team.
3) Cornell – Cornell – Denver – Our first differentiation of the week. For how crazy this season is in terms of upsets, doesn’t it surprise you that the polls are all SO similar? It’s weird. I’m going to slot Notre Dame into the #3 spot. Someone has to be different, and I still think the Irish are one of the top teams in the nation.
4) Denver – Denver – Bucknell – I love Quint for his Bucknell pick here. The Denver pick? Pretty boring. I’ll reward UNC for making me eat crow and beating the Terps. UNC at #4.
5) Loyola – Loyola – Cornell – Fine, I’ll put Maryland in the Top 5. Maybe peer pressure is a good thing? I know the Terps are good, but why does everyone seem to want to ordain them a clear #1 so early on?
6) UNC – Bucknell – Duke – Quint is making it rain today. Duke at #6? I can get on board with that. When Loyola lost to Duke it was AT Duke. Just a reminder for how I rationalize that choice.
7) Bucknell – UNC – UNC – Beat the #1 team from last week and you’re #7. Lose to the #1 team from this week and you’re #4. It makes less sense to me than it does to you. Princeton at #7 gets the nod.
8) Hopkins – Princeton – Loyola – Now we start to seem some real differences in the Polls… Hop gets rewarded by the coaches for crushing UVA. IL likes my Princeton pick I see. Quint buys on Loyola finally. He seems to not trust the Hounds much. I’ll go with Bucknell at #8. Still using the snow excuses, Connor? Yes, yes I am. Is it fair? Not at all. But the polls are hard.
9) Syracuse – Syracuse – Syracuse – So NONE of the polls rank Albany, and NONE of the polls rank Villanova, but Syracuse is a TOP TEN TEAM? You have got to be kidding me here. How did all three polls get this so wrong? Unreal in how consistent they all are with Cuse this year. Love the Orange D, and think they are coming around but two losses to unranked teams is not a good sign. I’ll go with Denver at #9.
10) Duke & Princeton – Hopkins – Penn – I like the #10 Penn pick by Quint but I’ll take Ohio State at #10.
11) N/A – Penn – Princeton – All seems to make sense. Had to start working these Ivy powers in to the Top 20. I’d go with Penn here at #11.
12) Ohio State – Duke – Hopkins – The teams in the 12-17 slots are arguably good picks. I’ll go through and list my selections for each spot though. They are quite different. #12 Penn State
13) Penn – Ohio State – Ohio State – I like Hopkins at #13. Too low for Hop? Says you!
14) Drexel – Drexel – Penn State – I’ll take Yale at #14. That pick is crazy like a fox.
15) Hofstra – Virginia – Drexel – Another Ivy team? Why not? Brown at #15.
16) Penn State – Hofstra – Virginia – For me, Syracuse slots in here at #16.
17) Virginia – Penn State – Hofstra – Drexel is my #17. It’s a team with talent and potential. The win over Hofstra makes me think they are finding form.
18) Lehigh – Lehigh – UMass – Hofstra gets the nod at #18. Very dangerous team right now.
19) Brown – St. John’s – Yale - Seriously, what did Albany do the pollsters? Win over Cuse? Check. Loss to top 10 Bucknell last week? Check. Yale and Drexel are Top 20 teams… I just don’t get it.
20) St. John’s – Brown – St. John’s – Polls love rewarding teams for recent wins. Evidently a win over Robert Morris will get you in the Top 20. Good reasoning. Since Bellarmine beat RMU early on, they get my #20 spot. Plus they gave OSU a heck of a game.
These teams also got votes in the USILA Poll: Colgate, UMass, Yale, Bellarmine, Albany, Villanova
These teams also got votes in the Nike/IL Poll: Yale, UMass, Colgate, Albany, Villanova, Marist, Bellarmine
Quint’s NEXT six teams in his top 63: Brown, Albany, Lehigh, Villanova, Colgate, Fairfield
Overall, the polls are all pretty similar, and to be honest, I find this more than just a little surprising. With all of the weird wins, upsets, and tight games, one might think the polls would be a little different, and offer some surprising insights, but for the most part, they don’t.
Quint takes some risks with his poll, which I love, but the IL/Nike Poll barely differs from the Coaches Poll, and I’d love to see the source of the sport go out on a limb a bit more. Do I think it will happen? Probably not. But that’s why I write this post each week!