Brenda Frese, head coach for Terps women's basketball team, talks about the upcoming season which is about to begin. (Jonas Shaffer / Baltimore Sun)
The Maryland women's basketball team was voted the No. 15 team in the preseason Associated Press Top 25 poll, released Thursday.
The Terps never were ranked lower than No. 6 and rose as high as No. 2 last season, but will defend their streak of Big Ten Conference championships without graduated All-Americans Brionna Jones (Aberdeen) and Shatori Walker-Kimbrough and Women's Basketball Coaches Association Freshman of the Year Destiny Slocum, who transferred to Oregon State.
Maryland, rated No. 13 in the USA Today coaches poll, is behind only No. 5 Ohio State among league schools in the AP rankings. No. 24 Michigan is the third and final Big Ten school to make the top 25.
The Terps, whose top-heavy scheduling hurt their NCAA tournament seeding in recent years, won't wait long to face top competition. After its Nov. 10 season opener against Albany, Maryland will host No. 4 and defending national champion South Carolina on Nov. 13. Less than a week later, the team will face Connecticut, the unanimous No. 1 in the AP poll, in Hartford on Nov. 19.
The Terps also will face Miami (Fla.) and Virginia, both of which received votes in the Top 25, later this month.