Tide Ranked Sixth

A day after being tabbed eighth in the ESPN.com/USA Softball Preseason Top 25, the Alabama Crimson Tide softball team was picked sixth in the USA Today/NFCA Preseason Top 25. Alabama finished last season ranked seventh in the country after making its third appearance in the Women's College World Series and second in the last three years.

The ranking marks the third time the Alabama softball team of Coach Patrick Murphy has debuted in the Top 10 in the preseason polls. Alabama started the 2001 season ranked fifth and sixth in 2004.

Bama started last season ranked 12th in the USA Today poll, its lowest ranking all season, and rose as high as sixth before finishing seventh at the end of the year.

"We are very excited about the upcoming season and I think this news will put a little extra into everyone's shoes today at practice," said Murphy. "We are honored of the respect given to our program. We do not take it for granted."

The Crimson Tide was one of three teams from the Southeastern Conference to dot the Top 10 with the Tennessee Lady Vols checking in at third and the Georgia Bulldogs 10th.

The SEC is represented by five different schools including Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, Auburn (17th) and Florida (19th). The LSU Tigers and Mississippi State Bulldogs are the only other conference school receiving votes.

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