Arizona State tops preseason polls

Sun Devils back at No. 1, leading seven Pac-12 teams in top 25

National Fastpitch Coaches Association

Last Updated - January 24, 2012 12:53 GMT

NCAA Photos
NCAA Photos

Arizona State won the 2011 Women's College World Series, topping Florida in the championship series, and returns as the preseason No. 1 in both the NFCA and USA Softball polls.

STARKVILLE, Miss. Arizona State will began the 2012 season exactly where it left off in 2011 -- as the unanimous No. 1 team in the nation, according to the NFCA Top 25 Preseason Poll released Tuesday.
The defending national champion Sun Devils (60-6 in 2011) claimed all 30 first-place votes in the poll to top the rankings for the sixth consecutive week dating back to last season. Florida (56-13) and Alabama (53-11) also remained unchanged from the end of last year, when they were second and third, respectively, in the final poll. Rounding out the top five are California (45-13), which moved up one spot from the final poll last year to fourth, and Oklahoma (43-19), which shot up two spots to fifth.
The only school to drop out of the poll from 2011 to 2012 was DePaul (41-15). The Blue Demons swapped spots with Big East rival Louisville (38-20), which joined the ranking at No. 25.
The Pac-12 Conference led the way in the poll with seven teams, while the Big 12 and the SEC each had six teams. Other conferences placing teams in the rankings were the Big Ten and Conference USA with two schools each, while the Big East and the Sun Belt each had one representative.
The NFCA Top 25 Poll is voted on by 30 Division I head coaches, one representing each conference