Next up on our women’s 2014 fall countdown, No. 18 Ohio State:
Editor’s note: The rankings are those of our college expert, Julie Williams, as he looked ahead to the collegiate preseason. The official Golfweek/Sagarin Rankings won’t be available until a couple of the weeks into the fall season.
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Preseason rank: 18
Final 2013-14 Golfweek/Sagarin ranking: 16
2013-14 in review: Jessica Porvasnik played brilliantly in her freshman season, leading the team in scoring and to a share of the Big Ten title. It was one of three victories all season, and there were three other top-3 finishes. The Buckeyes made program history with a tie for seventh at the NCAA Championship.
Notable departure: Allison Harper
Key returnees: Jessica Porvasnik, Katja Pogacar, Zoe-Beth Brake
Newcomers of note: Rio Watanabe
Circled on fall calendar: Windy City Collegiate
Fall outlook: Ohio State should take last spring’s historic NCAA finish and run with it. Only senior Harper is missing from that squad. Porvasnik will likely play a big role in leading the Buckeyes in scoring again this year, but Pogacar and Brake’s return is key, too. Ohio State adds only redshirt freshman Rio Watanabe, who has already adjusted to campus life. Ohio State looks strong enough to be tops in the Big Ten again this season.