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Roaring back near the top of rankings: Pitt ranked third in United Soccer Coaches poll

The United Soccer Coaches released its preseason Men’s NCAA Division I rankings on Wednesday with the Pitt Panthers returning to near the top of the list, as they’re are ranked third.

This is the highest preseason ranking for the Pitt in the history of their program. Last season, Pitt started the season ranked No. 4.

Heading into the fall 2021 campaign, shortly after making it to its first-ever College Cup appearance in May, the Panthers have now been ranked in the United Soccer Coaches poll top 25 for a program-shattering 20 straight weeks.

Each of the four schools represented in the College Cup round out the top four, as defending National Champion Marshall holds the top spot, with Indiana University second. The Panthers are the highest ranked ACC school (one spot above North Carolina).

During the 2020-2021 season, led by veteran head coach Jay Vidovich, Pitt earned its first ACC Coastal Division title and were ranked No. 1 for the first time in program history for a total of eight weeks in the fall and spring.

The Panthers are expected to bring back a good number of players from the 2020-21 squad, with a few notable exceptions, as starters Alexander Dexter, Nico Campuzano, Bryce Washington and Jasper Loeffelsend have graduated.

Analysis: Pitt’s College Cup loss to resilient Indiana offers tough lesson

Pitt opens their exhibition season on August 14 when they host Robert Morris and their regular season opener is August 26 at home vs. Duquesne.

Pitt men’s soccer announce 15-game regular season 2021 schedule


John Krysinsky has covered soccer and other sports for many years for various publications and media outlets. He is also author of 'Miracle on the Mon' -- a book about the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC, which chronicles the club, particularly the early years of Highmark Stadium with the narrative leading up to and centered around a remarkable match that helped provide a spark for the franchise. John has covered sports for Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DK Pittsburgh Sports, Pittsburgh Sports Report, has served as color commentator on Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC broadcasts, and worked with OPTA Stats and broadcast teams for US Open Cup and International Champions Cup matches held in the US. Krysinsky also served as the Head Men’s Soccer Coach at his alma mater, Point Park University, where he led the Pioneers to the first-ever winning seasons and playoff berths (1996-98); head coach of North Catholic boys (2007-08), associate head coach of Shady Side Academy boys (2009-2014).

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