PARK RIDGE, Ill. — Penn State has been chosen to win the Big Ten once again by the conference coaches in the preseason poll anounced Wednesday.
The Nittany Lions, who were picked No. 4 in the preseason NSCAA coaches’ poll on Tuesday, have won 15 consecutive Big Ten titles and are coming off one of the best seasons in program history with their first appearance in the College Cup national championship match. Penn State returns 8 of 11 starters from that team, including most of its offensive production, which finished 21-4-2 overall, 10-0-1 in the Big Ten and fell 4-1 to North Carolina in the national title match.
Also, senior forward Maya Hayes, junior defender Whitney Church and sophomore forward-midfielder Raquel Rodriguez were selected as Big Ten Preseason Players to Watch.
Michigan was picked second by the coaches and Illinois is third.
The Nittany Lions play Navy on Friday night in an exhibition game at Jeffrey Field before hosting West Virginia on Aug. 23 to open the season.