SALEM, Va. – Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) men's basketball coaches picked Guilford College fourth in its annual preseason poll. The league released the rankings Thursday at the annual ODAC Men's Basketball Media Day at the Salem Civic Center, site of the league's postseason tournament.
Defending league champion Virginia Wesleyan College secured 11 of 12 first-place votes and earned the top ranking with 121 points. Hampden-Sydney College stands second with 109 points, followed by Randolph-Macon College, which received the remaining first-place vote and 99 points. Guilford followed with 87 points, 15 in front of fifth-place Randolph College. Shenandoah University, in its first season as a full ODAC member, was picked 12th.
Head coach Tom Palombo starts his 10th season on Guilford's sidelines with two starters among nine letter winners back from last year's unit that placed fifth at the ODAC Tournament. Senior guard Josh Pittman, a two-time First Team All-ODAC selection, averaged a team-high 13.5 points per contest a year ago. He starts his senior year with 1,047 career points, which stands 28th in school history. Senior Carson Sullivan averaged 8.8 points, 4.7 rebounds and 2.5 assists per game as a starting guard last season.
The Quakers also welcome back sophomore center Will Freeman, who earned the league's 2011-12 Rookie of the Year Award after averaging 9.3 points and 4.1 rebounds per contest in 26 appearances.
Guilford opens its 106th recorded basketball season Nov. 16 against Southern Virginia University at 8:00 p.m. The contest is part of the Quakers' Daly Seven Hotels Invitational and includes William Peace University and Johnson & Wales (N.C.) University.
2012-13 ODAC MEN'S BASKETBALL PRESEASON POLL
(#) Denotes First Place Votes
1. Virginia Wesleyan (11) 121 pts.
2. Hampden-Sydney 109 pts.
3. Randolph-Macon (1) 99 pts.
4. Guilford 87 pts.
5. Randolph 72 pts.
6. Eastern Mennonite 69 pts.
7. Lynchburg 67 pts.
8. Washington and Lee 64 pts.
9. Bridgewater 30 pts.
9. Emory & Henry 30 pts.
9. Roanoke 30 pts.
12. Shenandoah 14 pts.