CENTERVILLE, Mass. — The Clarkson Golden Knights were tabbed the preseason favorites by the 12 ECAC Division I head coaches in the conference’s annual preseason poll, which will be released today.
The Golden Knights garnered eight of the 12 first-place votes after finishing second in the regular season last year, and then second in the ECAC championships. Since 1989, the Golden Knights have not been ranked in the preseason lower than second.
“We are excited about the season ahead, but as everyone knows, polls are polls,” said head coach Mark Morris. “I think that last season proved just what polls mean when Yale [picked to finish 10th] won the league. They are not always accurate, but we will certainly try to live up to the selection.
“It feels good to be picked number one, but there is a big job ahead of us. This league is full of great teams and great head coaches. Every night is like a playoff game in the ECAC.”
The last team to be ranked first in the preseason to capture the regular season crown was Vermont in 1996.
Finishing second in the poll were the defending ECAC tourney champions, the Tigers of Princeton. They gathered two first-place votes, while the remaining two went to the team picked to finish third, Harvard.
Last year’s ECAC regular-season champion, Yale, was picked to finish fourth, while last year’s preseason favorite, Rensselaer, was fifth.
Rounding out the top half of the picks was Colgate, while Cornell, Brown, St. Lawrence and Vermont are tabbed to take the last four playoff spots. Dartmouth and Union are predicted to miss the postseason.