Lady Tigers Receive Highest Ranking Since 1978
BATON ROUGE — LSU’s Lady Tigers basketball team was ranked third by the Associated Press and fourth by the coaches in the 2002-03 preseason polls released this week.
LSU’s No. 3 ranking by the AP is the highest for the program since the team finished the 1977-78 season as the second-ranked team in the nation. That season was also the last year the Lady Tigers were selected in the top three in the preseason poll.
The Lady Tigers received 941 points by the AP’s system, including one of 43 first-place votes. Duke, the top ranked team has 1,093 points and 38 first-place votes, while Tennessee is second with 1,049 points and four first-place votes.
The coaches’ poll sponsored by USA Today and ESPN ranked LSU fourth with 786 points. Duke, Tennessee and UConn precede the Lady Tigers in the poll that was determined by the votes of 40 division I coaches.
Six of LSU’s 2002-03 scheduled opponents were ranked in the coaches’ top 25, while eight of the foes appeared in the AP top 25. The Lady Tigers face non-conference opponents Penn State (14 AP, 14 coaches), Texas (11 AP, 11 coaches) and Santa Barbara (25 AP), and SEC opponents Tennessee (2, 2), Georgia (9, 9), Vanderbilt (12, 10), Arkansas (17, 16) and Mississippi State (24 AP).
LSU opens the season Friday with an exhibition game against Basketball Travelers at 7 p.m. in the Maravich Assembly Center. The Lady Tigers begin the regular season Nov. 22 at Tucson, Ariz., against the Arizona Wildcats.