BIRMINGHAM, Ala. -- In the annual Southeastern Conference coaches preseason poll, the Alabama Crimson Tide has been predicted to win the 2010 SEC Softball title by the league coaches. After coming off of one of their best seasons in program history and their sixth overall Women's College World Series appearance, the Crimson Tide led in votes with six out of 11 possible. Alabama leads the SEC in the national preseason polls ranked No. 2 in the USA Today/NFCA Coaches and ESPN.com/USA Softball polls.
The No. 3/5 Florida Gators, were voted to win the Eastern Division with 13 points, in addition to receiving three votes for the overall SEC title. The Gators, the defending SEC Champion and the 2009 WCWS national runner-up, finished with a 63-5 overall record. The No. 7/8 Georgia Bulldogs were voted to finish second in the East with 18 points and received one vote for the title. The Bulldogs, one of three SEC teams to advance to the WCWS, made it to the semi-final round of the Championship and finished with a No. 4 national ranking. Rounding out the Eastern Division is No. 16/18 Tennessee, followed by Kentucky with 34 points and South Carolina with 46 points.
In the Western Division, No. 13/18 LSU was voted to finish second behind the Crimson Tide with 17 points, followed by Auburn with 33 points. LSU also received a vote to win the overall title. Mississippi State tallied 39 points for a fourth-place vote in the division, while Ole Miss is on the heels of the Bulldogs with 40 points and the fifth-place spot. Rounding out the West is Arkansas with 54 points.
Points for the poll were awarded on a 1-2-3-4-5 basis for the Eastern Division and on a 1-2-3-4-5-6 basis for the Western Division. Coaches were not allowed to vote for their own team.
The league will begin softball action Feb. 11. The 2010 SEC Softball Tournament will be held May 13-15 at Bogle Park in Fayetteville, Ark.