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Aug. 6, 2014
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The two-time defending Big Ten champion Penn State men's soccer team was ranked 15th on Wednesday afternoon by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) in a preseason poll. This is the first time since 2011 that Penn State garnered preseason attention as those Nittany Lions were tabbed 18th.
The Nittany Lions, who made it to the 2013 NCAA Tournament Third Round as one of the final 16 teams in the nation, are the third-highest team in the preseason poll. Big Ten newcomer and NCAA Finalist Maryland was voted second overall behind its former ACC foe, Notre Dame, the defending champion. Michigan State was voted 10th.
The Nittany Lions will face four foes this season that were featured in Wednesday's poll. No. 13 Akron visits Happy Valley Nov. 5 for a Wednesday night tilt, while No. 21 Wisconsin will play at Jeffrey Field on Oct. 26 for Senior Day. In all, the Big Ten has four teams in the top 25, which ranks only behind the ACC's five and is tied with the Pac-12 for second.
Four more PSU opponents received votes: Indiana, St. John's, Michigan and Northwestern. Penn State's opener is set for Friday, Aug. 29 against Oakland. Game time is set for 8 p.m. and admission is free for all fans. That game kicks off a two-game opening weekend as St. John's visits Penn State for a Sunday night clash on Aug. 31 at 7 p.m.