SEWARD, Neb. – The Concordia University women’s basketball program has extended its active run of consecutive national rankings to 53. On Tuesday the Bulldogs checked in at No. 4 in the 2015-16 NAIA Division II Women’s Basketball Coaches’ Preseason Top 25 Poll. Tenth-year head coach Drew Olson’s program has been included in every ranking released since the 2011-12 preseason poll. In addition, this is the eighth-straight year that Concordia has been ranked in the preseason.
The Bulldogs finished last season at No. 2 in the poll following a loss to Morningside in the 2015 national championship game. Concordia went 35-3 overall and captured the GPAC tournament title during arguably the best season in school history. This season Olson returns eight players from his national tournament roster, but says goodbye to national player of the year Bailey Morris and second team All-American Tracy Peitz.
Since the start of the 2011-12 season, Concordia has been ranked inside the top 10 of all but two polls and has garnered top-five national rankings a total of 31 times. The 2014-15 senior class played every single game for a ranked Bulldog squad over its four seasons. Since the NAIA initiated the postseason rating following the national tournament in 2012, Concordia has been placed at No. 3 (2011-12), No. 9 (2012-13), No. 13 (2013-14) and No. 2 (2014-15).
The program has held the No. 1 ranking a total of 11 times, including the final seven polls of the 2002-03 season and the first four ratings of the 2012-13 campaign. The 2014-15 Bulldogs became the first in program history to reach the national title game and was the fourth Concordia women’s basketball team to advance to the national semifinals. In Olson’s nine seasons, six of his teams have ended the season in the top 25 (see below).
Based on the preseason poll, the Bulldogs are scheduled to play a total of eight games against ranked teams during the 2015-16 regular-season: No. 1 Morningside (twice), No. 6 University of Jamestown, No. 7 Briar Cliff (twice), No. 15 College of Saint Mary (twice) and No. 24 Mayville State University.
Preseason top 25 rankings under Olson
Final end of season top 25 rankings under Olson