The reigning national champion Maryland men’s lacrosse team is ranked No. 1 in the country to start the 2018 season, according to the the USILA/Nike Preseason Coaches Poll released Tuesday afternoon.
After a 42-season drought that included nine empty trips in the title game, the Terps ended last season on top, winning their first national championship since 1975 with a 9-6 win against Ohio State. They’ll now commence their first title defense in over four decades right back on top of the rankings.
There will be no easy stretch of the season for Maryland, as eight of their 13 opponents in 2018 were also included in the preseason poll, and Michigan is the only Big Ten opponent excluded from the rankings.
The Terps will play Penn, Notre Dame and Albany in three straight games at home between Feb. 21 and March 10 and will end the regular season with four consecutive games against currently-ranked teams. The Big Ten and National Championship rematch will take place on April 22 in College Park against the Ohio State Buckeyes.
Albany, Denver and Ohio State—three of the four teams the Terps beat in the tournament to claim their title—are all featured in the top 10, as well.
Maryland will play exhibitions against Georgetown on Saturday and Virginia on Feb. 3 before opening the season at home on Saturday, Feb. 10, against Navy.
In other news
Matt Canada is officially Maryland’s new offensive coordinator, and Maryland’s associate head coach and wide receivers coach Chris Beatty has added co-offensive coordinator to his list of duties.
Maryland announced its new volleyball coach, promoting associate head coach Adam Hughes to replace Steve Aird.
Maryland men’s basketball’s most recent loss to Indiana was another blown opportunity to pick up a second conference win on the road. Old problems resurfaced for the Terps, writes the Baltimore Sun’s Don Markus.
The women’s basketball team beat No. 12 Ohio State by 30 points on Monday, showing it can still be the Big Ten’s best team despite everything it’s been through.
The Portland Timbers acquired the rights to former Terps midfielder Eryk Williamson, the team announced Tuesday.
Maryland will host four-star CB Ken Montgomery this weekend before he visits Penn State the following weekend. Montgomery’s decision is between the Terps and Nittany Lions.
Former Terps commit Maleak Bryant has pledged to Miami (Ohio).