NCAA Softball News

Powerhouse Oklahoma leads the preseason top 25 college softball rankings for 2023

Powerhouse Oklahoma leads the preseason top 25 college softball rankings for 2023

(Editor’s note: The following article was first published on D1 Softball.

The race to Oklahoma City has become the race to catch Oklahoma. 

And as a new NCAA softball season begins, no one is any closer to solving that riddle than they were the past two seasons. Seeking to match UCLA as the only programs to win three consecutive NCAA Division I titles, Oklahoma takes the field in 2023 as the unanimous No. 1 team in the D1Softball Top 25. 

Here are the full preseason rankings:

Rank Team Final 2022 Record Final 2022 Rank
1 Oklahoma 59-3 1
2 UCLA 51-10 2
3 Oklahoma State 48-14 3
4 Florida State 53-7 12
5 Florida 49-19 5
6 Alabama 44-13 18
7 Northwestern 45-13 6
8 Arkansas 48-11 8
9 Clemson 42-17 15
10 Georgia 43-18 23
11 Stanford 39-22 16
12 Tennessee 41-18 20
13 Virginia Tech 46-10 7
14 Texas 47-22-1 4
15 UCF 49-14 13
16 Kentucky 37-19 19
17 LSU 34-23 NR
18 Arizona 39-22 9
19 Auburn 40-17 NR
20 Louisiana 48-13 24
21 Washington 38-17 21
22 Duke 44-11 14
23 Oregon 33-19 NR
24 North Texas 38-15 NR
25 Ole Miss 41-19 NR

With returning players who account for fully 10 percent of the D1Softball Top 100, led by Tiare Jennings (No. 1), Grace Lyons (No. 4), Cydney Sanders (No. 6), Jordy Bahl (No. 9) and Jayda Coleman (No. 15), the Sooners were an easy pick atop the rankings. After that, it’s a traffic jam worthy of Los Angeles at rush hour — which makes it fitting that UCLA edges out the competition at No. 2. The Bruins need to replace runs and veteran poise, but coming off a trip to the World Series semifinals, they have time to grow behind Megan Faraimo. 

Indeed, with so much uncertainty across the softball map, returning aces are the coin of the realm. 

No. 3 Oklahoma State can lean on Kelly Maxwell as it adjusts to another crop of talented transfers. Kathryn Sandercock leads restocked No. 4 Florida State, while Montana Fouts is the cornerstone for No. 6 Alabama. 

And while No. 5 Florida may not have a lone returning All-American in the circle, most programs only wish they had Lexie Delbrey and Elizabeth Hightower backing up a deep and potent lineup.

Danielle Williams hopes to make it back-to-back trips to OKC with No. 7 Northwestern, and reigning SEC Pitcher of…

Click Here to Read the Full Original Article at NCAA.com > softball d1 articles and video…