Aug. 11, 2009
BERKELEY - California earned a No. 8 ranking in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America's preseason, top-25 poll, the NSCAA announced on Tuesday. The Golden Bears, who also garnered a No. 8 ranking in the College Soccer News 2009 preseason rankings in July, earned a No. 4 ranking in TopDrawerSoccer.com's preseason poll.
Defending NCAA champion Maryland earned the top spot from the NSCAA. Defending Pac-10 champion UCLA, at No. 19, is the only other Pac-10 team in the coaches' poll. TopDrawerSoccer.com tabs Akron as its preseason No. 1 and UCLA at No. 20.
Cal will play a total of four games against NSCAA-ranked opponents, including Maryland (Sept. 6 in College Park, Md.), UCLA twice (Oct. 16 in Los Angeles and Oct. 23 in Berkeley) and No. 23 Cal Poly (Sept. 13 in Berkeley). The Bears split with the Terrapins last season, winning, 1-0, in Los Angeles and then losing, 2-1, in the NCAA Tournament to end their season. Also last year, Cal lost to the Bruins, 3-2 in overtime, in Berkeley and tied UCLA, 0-0, in Los Angeles.
The Bears, who ended 2008 with a 12-4-5 record and No. 12 NSCAA ranking, open their season with a game at Georgetown at 1 p.m. PT on Sept. 4. Cal's first home game is against George Washington as part of the Cal Legacy Classic at 4 p.m. on Sept. 11 at Edwards Stadium.