NORMAN – Winner of the last seven regular season Big 12 championships, the softball team of Oklahoma at the top of the 2019 Big 12 Preseason Coaches & Poll, the competition announced Thursday.
For the third year in a row, each of the six other coaches selected the Sooners as No. 1. Baylor received the other first place vote. Coaches were not allowed to vote for their own team.
This marks the seventh consecutive year and the tenth in the last eleven that OU stands at the top of the preseason question of the conference. The Sooners received 36 points in this year's poll and were followed by Texas with 29 and Baylor with 26.
Oklahoma State was fourth (23 points) and Texas Tech was fifth (15 points). Rounding out the poll are Iowa State (12 points) and Kansas (6 points).
Last year, the Sooners became simply the second team in Big 12's history and ended unbeaten in a league game. OU went 18-0 for the best conference finish in school annals. In general, the Sooners led the nation with a 57-5 record when they made their twelfth Women's College World Series appearance.
Oklahoma returns five All-Big 12 selections from 2018. Recurring tributes from the first team include senior infielders Shay Knighten and Sydney Romero and second player Jocelyn Alo. Senior infielder Caleigh Clifton earned second-team praise last year and infielder Eliyah Flores joined Alo on the All-Freshman Team.
Alo was the NFCA and Big 12 Freshman of the Year, and head coach Patty Gasso was chosen as Coach of the Year for the 11th time.
The Sooners start their campaign from 2019 on February 8 while recording Syracuse at the GCU Kickoff Tournament in Phoenix, Ariz. Oklahoma opens his home on March 1-3 while Oregon State and Louisiana host the Courtyard Marriott Tournament.