MVC Media Poll: Creighton Favored

October 28th, 2008
OMAHA, Neb. -- The Creighton men¹s basketball team is the near-unanimous pick to win the Missouri Valley Conference, according to the preseason poll announced today during the league¹s annual Basketball Media Day. Creighton earned 36 of 39 first-place votes in the survey of league coaches, beat writers, sports information directors and play-by-play men.

Pollsters have accurately predicted the league¹s regular-season champ only 10 times out of 24 since 1985-86, but Bluejay fans can take solace knowing that 21 of those 24 predicted champs have gone on to postseason play, with 15 of those 21 playing in the NCAA Tournament.

This is the second time in three years that Creighton has been picked to win The Valley, and league-high seventh time overall since the preseason poll began in 1985-86. Creighton won the regular-season title in two of their previous six runs as favorite (1990-91 and 2000-01) and finished in second place the other four times (1989-90, 1998-99. 2002-03. 2006-07).

The preseason poll doesn¹t always match the year-end standings. Last year¹s poll forecasted Drake to finish ninth in the MVC. The Bulldogs proved everyone wrong, going 28-5 and winning the Valley regular-season title by two games over an Illinois State team tabbed fifth in the preseason.

Creighton collected 36 first-place votes and earned 386 of a maximum 390 points in the preseason poll. Southern Illinois grabbed two first-place votes and was second with 322 points, just ahead of Illinois State, which had 309 points and garnered the remaining first-place vote. Defending league
regular-season and tournament champion Drake was fourth with 274 points, its best preseason pick the 1991-92 season. Bradley was fifth with 219 points while UNI was sixth with 186 points. Rounding out the bottom four teams were Indiana State (137), Evansville (122), Wichita State (105) and Missouri State (85).

2008-09 MVC Preseason Poll

Rk. School (1st place votes) Total
1. Creighton (36) 386
2. Southern Illinois (2) 322
3. Illinois State (1) 309
4. Drake 274
5. Bradley 219
6. Northern Iowa 186
7. Indiana State 137
8. Evansville 122
9. Wichita State 105
10. Missouri State 85

Poll determined by panel of league sports information directors and media.


Preseason All-MVC Team

Jonathan Cox, Sr., F, Drake
Osiris Eldridge*, Jr., G, Illinois State
Bryan Mullins, Sr., G, Southern Illinois
P¹Allen Stinnett, So., G, Creighton
Josh Young, Jr., G, Drake
*Preseason Player of the Year

Honorable Mention:
Shy Ely (Evansville)
Jason Holsinger (Evansville)
Andrew Warren (Bradley)
Theron Wilson (Bradley)