Air Force Receives Best Preseason Ranking Ever
Oct. 29, 2008
USAF ACADEMY, Colo. - With a placement at No. 13, the Air Force men's gymnastics team collected their best preseason ranking ever in the GymInfo Men's Pre-Season Coaches Poll, which was recently released. Not only is it the Falcons best preseason ranking ever, it is the first time since 2004 that they have received a mention in the annual October poll.
Air Force was last ranked in the GymInfo Preseason Coaches' Poll prior to the 2004 season, when it was ranked 15th. That placement, which had been the best until this year, also happened in 2001 and 2003. The Falcons have also entered a season ranked 17th (2002) and 19th (1998, 1999).
The Falcons are led by fourth-year head coach Kip Simons and will feature an impressive rotation of veteran gymnasts, as well as a talented class of newcomers.
Mountain Pacific Sports Federation foes Stanford and Oklahoma are ranked first and second, respectively, in the preseason poll, while the Big Ten programs of Ohio State, Illinois and Penn State round out the top-five. Stanford received 10 of 14 first-place votes, while Oklahoma earned a pair. Ohio State and Cal (seventh) each tallied a single first-place vote.
Air Force has the highest ranking of all three service academies, leading 15th-ranked Navy and Army, which was not ranked. The Falcons, which will face both programs at the All-Academy Championships in February, will also travel to Navy and play host to Army during the course of the upcoming season.
The Falcons officially open the season on Jan. 10, when they host the annual Rocky Mountain Open at the Academy's Cadet West Gym.