NCAA Analysis | A&M Overtakes Stanford In New CSCAA Poll

NCAA Analysis | A&M Overtakes Stanford In New CSCAA Poll

New college swimming rankings from CSCAA for the women feature Texas A&M at number-one followed by Stanford.

Dec 7, 2017 by Maclin Simpson
NCAA Analysis | A&M Overtakes Stanford In New CSCAA Poll

Change in the rankings is inevitable. Even in swimming, upsets happen and a new team emerges as the favorite. The most recent CSCAA rankings reflected the results in the pool from the past month of invites.

The defending women's national champions, the Stanford Cardinal, fell from the top spot for the first time this year. Despite an American-record swim from Katie Ledecky, Stanford finished second at the Art Adamson Invitational in College Station, Texas, in mid-November.

Beyond the top team falling, the rest of the nation had an opportunity to prove what it's capable of as this season's pecking order began to take shape.


There's A New No. 1

When one team falls, another rises. In this case the switch happened in the same meet. Texas A&M beat Stanford by over 200 points in the Art Adamson Invitational to hand the Cardinal their first loss.

The Aggies put the pedal down and didn't look back. Texas A&M won nine events, topping the eight won by Stanford. The Aggies claimed all but one relay during the meet as well.

The easiest way to move up is beat a team head-to-head. Swimming is privileged to have time comparisons, but a human ranking is still subjective. Texas A&M made it very simple for the voters by beating Stanford.

The voting wasn't unanimous though. The Aggies received 9 of 11 first-place votes. The other two first-place votes remained with Stanford. Neither school was selected worse than second. 

A Lot Changed Between 10-20

The top 10 featured movement but nothing compared the shuffle in the second set of 10 teams. Within the top 10, the teams remained the same with corrections based on the recent meets. No one fell from the top 10.

While Nos. 11-20 mostly kept the same teams, all but three moved more than one line. Alabama and Florida both sank in the polls while the rankings' big risers took their spots. 

The shifting in this poll isn't uncommon. The voters have finally had an opportunity to see each team in a rested, championship-like environment. They can get a better idea of what each team will look like come February instead of basing it solely on dual meets.


Up — Virginia, Ohio State, Arizona

After slipping in the polls early, Virginia jumped back to No. 11 following the Georgia Invitational. Arizona has risen exponentially since the preseason polls, making a jump from No. 22 to No. 17 this time around. Ohio State was the big jumper, rising from No. 23 to No. 13 after its home invite.

Down — Alabama, Purdue, Notre Dame

Alabama's jump to No. 11 was short-lived, as the invites have dropped the Tide back down to No. 20. Notre Dame and Purdue have both steadily declined since their peaks in October. All three Indiana schools dropped in this week's rankings.

By Ben Colin