NEW HAVEN, Conn. –The Philadelphia University men's basketball team has been selected as the top team in the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) southern division in the preseason coaches poll released on Monday. The conference's 13 head men's basketball coaches did the voting.
Philadelphia took the number one after garnering 11 first-place votes and a total of 75 points.
The Rams' return three starters, including 2011-12 All-CACC first team guard Jim Connolly, from last season's team that posted a 19-10 overall record and qualified for the NCAA Tournament for the 32nd time in program history—the second most appearances in Division II.
Connolly was seventh in the CACC in scoring with 16.8 points per game a season ago. He was the conference's top free throw shooter as he made 90.9 percent of his attempts, and also drained a conference-best 85 three-pointers.
Also returning to the Philadelphia backcourt are junior guard Nick Christian and sophomore guard Nick Schlitzer. Christian ranked fourth in the conference with 143 assists, was sixth with 47 steals, and eighth with a 2.0 assist-to-turnover ratio. Schlitzer placed third in the CACC in free throw percentage (88.0), three-point percentage (45.0), fourth in made three pointers (45), and 16th in scoring (14.0 ppg).
Goldey-Beacom (54 points) and Chestnut Hill (50 points) each were given a first-place vote and came in second and third, respectively. Holy Family took the fourth position with 47 points. Wilmington (Del.) and University of the Sciences rounded out the division with 23 and 21 points, respectively.
Defending conference champion Bloomfield (86 points) was given nine first-place votes and finished first in the northern division. Dominican (N.Y.) was second with three first-point votes and a total of 77 points. The third spot went to Post with 59 points and one first-place vote. Concordia (N.Y.) and Caldwell earned 50 points. Felician (25 points) and Nyack (12) concluded the northern division.
Philadelphia opens the 2012-13 season against University of the Sciences on Tuesday, Nov. 13 in the Gallagher Center at 8 p.m.