Before getting to #12 - #8, here is a recap of the ten teams who have already made the rankings:
20. Men's Basketball
18. Men's Track and Field
17. Women's Cross Country
16. Men's Lacrosse
15. Men's Soccer
13. Women's Tennis
12. (10) Squash – Last season, the Navy squash team set an all-time record for wins (27) but struggled mightily against the stronger teams in the country. This year the team went 26-8 but fared better when they stepped up to play tougher opponents. In matches against top-ten teams Penn,
11. (9) Water Polo – Army currently fields a club team in water polo and I seriously doubt they have any real ambition to get into another water-based competition with the Mids (more on the other ones later in the countdown). However, Navy does play Air Force who continues to get better each season. The Falcons almost beat the Mids for the first time in 8 years, but Navy pulled out the victory 12-10. Unfortunately though it looks like this tightening series will take a break in 2010. According to Air Force's recently released schedule, the Mids are nowhere to be found on it. Perhaps Navy will be entering one of the many tournaments that Air Force is competing in next season. Anyway, back to this past season when the Mids failed to advance to the NCAA Championships after losing to
10. (8) Tennis – It would be an understatement to say that the Navy men's tennis team got off to a bad start. After posting an impressive 18-8 record last year, the team struggled out of the gate to the tune of a 4-9 mark; however they righted the ship at a good time, as they won 9 of their next 10 matches including conference wins over Colgate, Bucknell, Lehigh, and Lafayette. But the Mids picked the wrong time to lay an egg as they followed up their impressive streak by losing three in a row, including a 3-4 loss to Army in the star match. At 13-13 and with a new losing streak in tow, Navy headed into the Patriot League Tournament not brimming with confidence. However, the Mids dug deep and after shutting out its opponents in the first two rounds, they got a chance at revenge against Army in the finals. Led by tournament MVP Owen Bullard, Navy took care of business, beating the Cadets 4-2 to win the title. Navy has now won eight Patriot League crowns over the last 15 seasons, and each time they beat Army in the finals of the championship. As a reward for winning the league title, Navy got top-seeded
9. (11) Women's Track and Field – Last year, Amy Watson led the Mids to an amazing season, but with her abrupt departure from Navy this season, it looked as if the team could struggle, especially in the distant events. As former Navy assistant football coach and current ESPN commentator Lee Corso so famously says, "Not so fast." The Mids swept the Black Knights in both the indoor and outdoor star meets. Navy has now won nine of the last 10 duals against Army. Leading the way for Navy was sophomore Jess Palacio, who won both the 800 and 1,500 meter events. And although the Mids could not beat Bucknell in the outdoor championship, Palacio was named the Track-Athlete of the Meet. She won her second and third career individual titles in the 1,500 and 800 meter races. In winning the 800 meter race, Palacio was the first Navy runner to do so since Regina Ware in 1998. Her time of 2:09.85 was the eighth-fastest ever by a Navy athlete.
8. (17) Wrestling – No Navy team had to deal with more injuries in 2009-10 than the wrestling program. Head coach Bruce Burnett talked about the significance of the injuries and more when he joined the GoMids.com Coach's Show back in March. However the Mids definitely improved upon their 7-9 record last year with a 6-2 mark in dual meets in 2010. The two highlights of the year were the victories over Army 26-6 and the upset win over #7
Seven teams (Women's Basketball, Women's Lacrosse, Women's Soccer, Women's Swimming, Men's Swimming, Men's Cross Country and Football) remain in the hunt for the coveted prize of being ranked number one.