February 28, 2008Eight sports among top 25 rankings this spring
Already this spring, eight different Baylor athletic programs have appeared among the top 25 in the nation: men's and women's basketball, baseball, softball, men's and women's tennis, and men's and women's track and field.
Baseball America ranked the Bears 15th in its preseason poll, while the Lady Bear softball team was ranked No. 8 in the year's first USA Today/NFCA Top 25 poll, the program's highest-ever preseason ranking.
Baylor's men's tennis team continued to rank among the nation's elite progams at No. 4 nationally. The Baylor women weren't far behind at No. 13 and featured three singles players in the nation's top 25.
In the world of track and field, after opening the season unranked, the Baylor women climbed all the way to No. 7, joining the 13th-ranked Baylor men in the top 25.
Football, soccer programs name new coaches
Shortly after our last issue went to print, Baylor named Art Briles as the Bears' new head football coach.
Briles comes to Baylor after spending five seasons as head coach at the University of Houston, where he guided his alma mater to four bowl games. In 2006, Briles earned Conference USA and Sportexe Division I-A National Coach of the Year honors for guiding the Cougars to a Conference USA title and the program's first 10-win season since 1990--just five years after Houston suffered through a winless season.
Briles first received recognition for his work at Stephenville High School, where in 12 seasons, he led the Yellowjackets to four state championships. He then spent three years as an assistant coach at Texas Tech before taking over at Houston.
Baylor also named former U.S. National Team player Marci Miller Jobson as the school's new head soccer coach in December.
Jobson spent the previous three years as head coach at Northern Illinois while also playing for the national team. At NIU, she led the Huskies to a pair of conference tournament appearances and improved the program's win total each year.
A three-time all-conference honoree at Wisconsin and SMU, Jobson played professionally for nine seasons before beginning her coaching career.
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