Aug. 17, 2011
Park Ridge, Ill. – Eight-time defending conference champion Penn State was chosen as the conference favorite for the 2011 season as voted on by the Big Ten coaches, the conference office announced on Wednesday. Winners of the last four NCAA championships, the Nittany Lions top the poll for the seventh straight season.
Illinois, who finished tied for second in the Big Ten in 2010, and conference-newcomer Nebraska were voted to finish second this season according to the poll. Purdue, who tied for fourth last season, was selected to finish in the same fashion this year, while Minnesota, which finished 2010 tied for second, was tabbed fifth in the voting. Michigan State, which finished 7-13 in conference action last year, rounds out the poll at No. 6.
Additionally, conference coaches selected a Preseason All-Big Ten team, which features five unanimous selections and two returning members to the preseason honor roll. Illinois’ Michelle Bartsch appears on the team for the third time, while Michigan’s Alex Hunt is a two-time honoree. Other unanimous selections include Illinois’ Colleen Ward, Nebraska’s Brooke Delano and Penn State’s Deja McClendon.
The complete preseason poll and All-Big Ten team can be found on the PDF at the top of the page.