NCAA Division I Men's Composite Rankings
|At 0-2, Albany is one of the teams that is difficult to sort out, leading to inconsistent placement in the rankings. (John Strohsacker/LaxPhotos.com|
Our second look at the 2014 composite rankings for NCAA Division I men's lacrosse has our first unanimous No. 1, as Duke stands alone after sharing No. 1 with Syracuse a week ago due to the Orange falling to Maryland. The Terrapins jumped all the way into a tie with North Carolina at No. 2, leading nicely into this weekend's tilt with the Blue Devils at home.
Each week, we will publish an aggregate of the five major polls from Lacrosse Magazine, the Inside Lacrosse media poll, the USILA coaches poll, Quint Kessenich's Top 20 and the LaxPower computer rankings. (Note: LaxPower rankings will be incorporated later this season, when its algorithm will provide a more accurate reading.)
NCAA Division I Men's Composite Rankings: February 24th
Another week gives us another look at the varying world of where those 'in the know' rate the men's lacrosse world in NCAA Division I. It being the early part of the year, that's going to lead to some fluctuations as teams come online for the first games of the season and we get to know a bit more about whether they're meeting the expectations for coming together or not. (See last week's composite rankings here)
This week has a few clear differences in opinion among the ranking bodies, starting near the top with Princeton, which comes in at No. 5 by Lacrosse Magazine's but 9th and 10th for the others. This reflects the differences in the preseason rankings for the Tigers, who have not played enough to change anybody's mind for better or worse, but that will very possibly change this weekend when traditional early-season rival Johns Hopkins visits New Jersey.
The Blue Jays are also a bit of a splitter, with LM and Quint rating them more to the middle of the pack at 11th and 13th, while the media and USILA have them higher (7th and 5th). They are 3-0, but Ohio State and Towson wins haven't shown to be of major value (but that may change), and Michigan is 2-2.
The other head-scratcher this week is Albany, which stands at 0-2, but both losses came at the hands of good teams — Syracuse and Drexel — by a goal. LM, media and USILA slot the Great Danes at 16-18, but Quint left them off his rankings entirely. Its another case of us simply not having enough reliable voting data to be consistent, given Drexel's loss to Virginia and Syracuse falling against Maryland. It's particularly relevant given that Albany won't have much strength of schedule to run back up the rankings chart through America East play if they fall further at this point.
Follow the developments of the composite rankings weekly at LaxMagazine.com as the season progresses.
Note on methodology: Several teams are listed in each poll as 'received votes' or 'also considered' beyond the Top 20. Since teams beyond 20 are not ranked numerically, we assigned teams a score of 21 in any poll where they did not make the top 20 to arrive at a fair composite. A team not ranked in a particular Top 20 is denoted with a (-) as its ranking.