The 2017-18 soccer season is barely a week old, but the NCAA men’s rankings continue to fluctuate. Three teams have shifted positions in the rankings, but the same five teams remain among Division I’s best. Here’s a look at the early season rankings:
Upcoming Opponents: Tulsa, San Francisco, Yale, Saint Louis
Stanford Men’s soccer came into the 2017-18 season as the number one ranked program in the country. So far in the early season, the Cardinals have more than justified that ranking. In their first game of the season, they pummeled San Jose State by a score of 4-0. Foster Langsdorf was the star of the game, leading the way with 2 goals. Sam Werner added two assists in the win.
2. Wake Forest
Upcoming Opponents: Louisville, Appalachian State, Pitt, High Point
There may have been a bit of concern for Wake Forest after they concluded their preseason without a win, but all those doubts were quickly squashed when the games mattered. Wake Forest won their first two games by a combined score of 9-2. The quality of opponents in those two games is something to boast about for Wake; both Rutgers and Providence had high expectations this season.
3. North Carolina
Upcoming Opponents: Pitt, William & Mary, Duke, George Washington
Ironically, North Carolina has faced the same two opponents as Wake Forest this season. And they fared even better, winning by a combined score of 10-3. UNC’s Jelani Pieters has already recorded three goals this season. Against Rutgers in the second game of the year, UNC outshot them by a whopping tally of 19-5.
Upcoming Opponents: Cal State Northridge, UC Davis, Saint Mary’s, Saint Louis
Denver began the season as the third ranked team in the country, but took a step back in the rankings to no fault of their own. Soccer experts questioned their high ranking after an uninspiring 1-0 win over Akron. Denver will look to prove its critics wrong with a weak schedule coming up including no teams ranked in the top 25.
Upcoming Opponents: North Florida, Boston College, UCLA, Pitt
Clemson handled both of their first two games well, despite the close scores. Early on in the year, it appears defense and goaltending will be the backbone of their team. Diego Campos leads the team with 2 goals and 8 shots on net. Can this team rekindle the magic that help them go 17-3-4 two seasons ago?