Cougars Earn Votes in Top 25 Polls

BYU earned votes in both top-25 polls out today (Photo by Jonathan Hardy/BYU Photo)

PROVO, Utah - The BYU softball team earned votes in both the ESPN.com/USA Softball Collegiate and USA Today/NFCA Division I Top 25 preseason polls released today. The Cougars garnered eight votes and one vote, respectively, in the polls.

In addition, the Cougars' 2012 schedule inclues nine schools ranked or receiving votes in the ESPN.com poll and 11 schools in the USA Today rankings. Top programs BYU will face this season include defending national champion and No. 1/1 Arizona State (Mar. 15), No. 4/2 Florida (Feb. 24), No. 11/16 Oregon (Feb. 11), No. 15/17 Texas A&M (Feb. 10, Feb. 24) and No. 16/11 Oklahoma State (Feb. 23).

With eight votes in the ESPN.com/USA Softball Collegiate poll, BYU would be tied for No. 29 if the poll were to be extended while its one vote in the USA Today/NFCA Division I poll would place the Cougars tied at No. 39.

BYU is coming off a 40-18 record in 2010. Head coach Gordon Eakin won Mountain West Conference Coach of the Year after leading the Cougars to their third-straight conference title and seventh-straight NCAA Regional.

Playing in the Western Athletic Conference this season, BYU returns three All-MWC honorees, including senior Jessica Dugas, junior JC Clayton and sophomore Carly Duckworth.

BYU opens its season on Thursday, Feb. 9, against Oregon State at the Kajikawa Classic in Tempe, Ariz.