STEPHENVILLE – The Tarleton men's basketball team will open the season as the No. 10-ranked team in the nation, according to the official NABC preseason poll.
It's the second straight season the Texans have been in the top 10 to start the year after being ranked No. 2 in last year's preseason NABC poll. It's the seventh time Tarleton has been ranked in the preseason top 10 in program history.
"It's always an honor to be recognized amongst your peers," said associate head coach Chris Reisman. "It's great for recruiting and the visibility of our university. We know this ranking is in large part due to how last year's team performed and finished as well as the success of our program over time. We had a great group of five seniors last season and this ranking is a testament to their efforts here.
"We are excited for this upcoming season but we have a young team and a lot of improvements to make. I hope our guys will understand this will only fuel people to want to beat us more and they will get everyone's best shot each night they step on the court."
Tarleton is coming off its seventh straight 20-win season at 24-9 and won its second straight NCAA South Central regional championship. The Texans return six lettermen and two starters from last year's squad. Headlining the returning Texans are South Central regional tournament MVP Romond Jenkins (7.2 points, 7.7 rebounds), Deshawn Riddick (5.9 points, 2.3 assists), Chantz Chambers (5.8 points, 2.1 rebounds) and Nosa Ebomwonyi (3.0 points, 2.1 rebounds).
Tarleton is the highest ranked Lone Star Conference team in the NABC poll with Angelo State coming in a 19 and Midwestern State at 20. West Texas A&M received 32 votes in the poll. West Liberty (W. Va.) opens the season as the No. 1 team. Tarleton is also ranked No. 14 in the nation in an unofficial poll from the Division II Bulletin.
The Texans will play Southwest Christian University in an exhibition game on Nov. 6 at 4 p.m. in Wisdom Gym before the season opener against Adams State on Nov. 11 at 7 p.m. for the Texan Tip-Off Classic.