Jan. 28, 2004
Tallahassee, FL –
The 19th-ranked Seminole softball team is starting the 2004 season right where they ended the 2003 season, atop the ACC. The seven ACC coaches unanimously picked FSU No. 1 in the conference’s preseason coaches’ poll released Wednesday. Florida State has won nine of the 13 ACC Championship titles and enters 2004 as the defending champion for the first time since 2001.
“It is always an honor when coaches in your own conference unanimously pick you No. 1 but it definitely puts a target on your back,” said head coach Dr. JoAnne Graf. “Winning the ACC gets tougher and tougher every year. I think the ACC is an underrated conference. We have had the number two RPI in the country as far as conferences for several years right behind the Pac-10. I think the coaches in our conference have done an excellent job in strengthening their schedules, their facilities are all getting better and we have quality coaches and players.
“The fact that ACC teams have done really well in the postseason in the last few years and have upset some pretty big teams has helped. It is a strong conference and it is only getting better especially the future with the addition of NC State this year and Virginia Tech and Boston College down the road.”
Florida State is 73-16 all-time in ACC play winning a gaudy 82% of its conference games and the Tribe has finished atop the ACC regular season standings 10 times in 12 years. The Tribe has won 26 consecutive ACC regular season games with the last loss coming to Georgia Tech in 2001.
This is the first year since Maryland joined the ACC for softball in 1995 that the league has expanded and the regular season is now scheduled for 10 games with the addition of NC State. ACC Championship runner-up Virginia, North Carolina and Georgia Tech all finished in a tie for second in the preseason poll. Maryland and NC State round out the poll.
Florida State opens the 2004 campaign at home February 6 at 4:00 p.m. versus Minnesota and follows that game at 6:00 p.m. versus Florida A&M in the Seminole Classic Tournament. For more information on the 2004 Seminole softball team or any of Florida State’s athletic teams, please log on to the official athletic website for Florida State University at www.seminoles.com.