LAFAYETTE, La. (10/23/06) Coming off a 19-win season and a Western Division title, the North Texas women’s basketball team has been picked to finish second in the West Division of the Sun Belt Conference in the preseason coaches poll. The Mean Green received one-first place vote and 65 points in the poll.
Junior Talicia Sanders was named to the Preseason All-Sun Belt Conference third-team for the first time in her career. Sanders led the Mean Green in blocked shots last season and is one of the most prolific rebounders in the conference.
North Texas returns only one starter from a team that won 19 games and its fourth division championship in eight seasons. North Texas has finished either first or second in its conference division in seven of the past eight years and is going after its fifth division title in the past nine seasons.
Arkansas State was the pick to win the West Division with 10-first place votes. Following North Texas is Louisiana-Lafayette who received two-first place votes. Arkansas-Little Rock is picked fourth, Denver fifth, Louisiana-Monroe sixth, and New Orleans seventh.
Three-time defending conference champion Middle Tennessee returns as the favorite in the East with nine-first place votes. Western Kentucky is picked second, followed by Florida International, South Alabama, Florida Atlantic and Troy.
Chrissy Givens from Middle Tennessee was tabbed as the Preseason Player of the Year.
The Sun Belt Conference also announced its 2006-07 television schedule and North Texas will be featured on February 15 at Denver.
The 2007 SBC Tournament will be host by Louisiana-Lafayette
Preseason Coaches Poll
East Division Points
1. Middle Tennessee (9) 74
2. Western Kentucky (3) 67
3. Florida International (1) 52
4. South Alabama 38
T5. Florida Atlantic 21
T5. Troy 21
West Division Points
1. Arkansas State (10) 87
2. North Texas (1) 65
3. Louisiana-Lafayette (2) 64
4. UALR 55
5. Denver 48
6. Louisiana-Monroe 31
7. New Orleans 14
(first place votes in parenthesis)
Preseason Women’s All-Sun Belt Team
Jocelyn Love (UALR, Sr., G/F)
Adrianne Davie (Arkansas State, Sr., C)
Chrissy Givens (Middle Tennessee, Sr., G)
Yolanda Jones (Louisiana-Lafayette, Sr., F)
Crystal Kelly (Western Kentucky, Jr., F)
Rudy Sims (Arkansas State, Sr., G)
Tyesha Lowery (Denver, Sr., G)
Lasma Jekabsone (Florida International, Sr., C)
Krystle Horton (Middle Tennessee, Sr., F)
Whitney Woodard (South Alabama, Sr., F)
Renee Renz (UALR, So., F)
Le’Della English (New Orleans, Jr., G)
Talicia Sanders (North Texas, Jr., C)
Laura Lee Holman (Troy, Sr., G)
Tifany Zaragoza (Western Kentucky, Sr., G)
Preseason Player of the Year: Chrissy Givens (Middle Tennessee, Sr., G)