Members of the media who cover the Ohio Valley Conference have selected their predicted order of finish for the men's and women's basketball teams this year. The Morehead State women have been tabbed for a third-place showing, while the men are ninth.
For the fourth year in a row the OVC has conducted a preseason Men's and Women's Media Poll prior to the start of the season. In total 12 voters from around the league cast a ballot on whom they thought would be the 2017-18 basketball favorites and preseason players of the year.
The OVC will release its official preseason poll and All-OVC team, as voted on by league head coaches and sports information directors, on Tuesday, October 24 during the league's annual Media Day in Evansville.
The Eagle women finished 21-10 in 2016-17 and second place in the conference. They advanced to the program's first-ever postseason Women's NIT Tournament. Two of the top three scorers, junior guard Miranda Crockett (11.2 ppg) and senior forward Eriel McKee (11.1 ppg) return, along with point guard Darianne Seward. She dished off 110 assists in just 21 games (5.2 apg). Senior forward Brooke Todd also is back after blocking 83 shots to rank second in the OVC last season.
The men's team will have a whole new look in 2017-18 with 10 new players. Junior forward Lamontray Harris (9.4 ppg) is the team's most potent offensive returnee. Sophomore guard Jordan Walker hit 49 percent of his three-pointers to rank among the most accurate distance shooters in the league and the nation.
2017-18 Media OVC Preseason Men's Predicted Order of Finish
1. Belmont (8 first-place votes) - 148 points
2. Murray State (1) - 138
3. Jacksonville State (2) - 132
4. Tennessee State (1) - 95
5. Eastern Kentucky (1) - 91
6. UT Martin - 82
7. Tennessee Tech - 80
8. Eastern Illinois - 79
9. Morehead State - 59
10. Austin Peay - 48
11. Southeast Missouri - 36
12. SIUE - 26
Preseason Player of the Year: Jonathan Stark, Murray State
2017-18 Media OVC Preseason Women's Predicted Order of Finish
1. Belmont (12 first-place votes) - 155 points
2. UT Martin (1) - 125
3. Morehead State - 119
4. SIUE - 109
5. Murray State - 96
6. Austin Peay - 91
7. Tennessee Tech - 71
8. Southeast Missouri - 66
9. Eastern Kentucky - 57
10. Jacksonville State - 55
11. Tennessee State - 40
12. Eastern Illinois - 30
Preseason Player of the Year: Ke'Shunan James, Murray State