JACKSON, Tenn. - 10/18/2007 - The TranSouth Athletic Conference men’s basketball coaches have released their preseason poll for the 2007-08 season. The Union University Bulldogs, who finished second in the regular season and tournament last year, is picked to finished third.
In the 11-year history of the TranSouth Conference, Union's men have captured five regular season and tournament titles. The Bulldogs have also been to seven of the 11 conference tournament championship games, including last year's overtime loss at Crichton.
Crichton was picked first, followed by Lambuth in the second spot. Crichton was last year's regular season and tournament champion. Lambuth finished in tie for second in the regular season with Union.
Union, Crichton, and Lambuth all earned bids to the NAIA National Tournament. Crichton received the first of the two TranSouth automatic berths to the NAIA National Tournament; the other went to the Union . Lambuth acquired an at large bid to the tournament. Crichton and Union both advanced to the NAIA Elite Eight before being eliminated.
The conference sees a eleventh member join the ranks this year. Blue Mountain College will field a men’s basketball team for the first time under the leadership of Jerry Conner. Conner is one of three new faces in the conference this year on the sidelines. Winston Bennett, a former University of Kentucky and NBA player, has taken over the Mid-Continent University program. Andy Sharpe is the new mentor at Martin Methodist after a successful season at Emmanuel College.
In each of the last four seasons the regular season title has come down to the final weekend of conference play. In addition, the conference tournament confirms the depth of the conference as upsets continue to happen throughout.
TranSouth Men's Basketball Coaches Preseason Rankings
1. Crichton College 111 (11)
2. Lambuth University 105
3. Union University 100
4. Trevecca Nazarene 72
5. Martin Methodist 68
6. Cumberland University 65
7. Lyon College 56
8. Freed-Hardeman 53
9. Bethel College 32
10. Mid-Continent 25
11. Blue Mountain 14
Votes were given with a value of 11=1 point and 1=11 points.
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