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Inside Lacrosse Releases Face-Off Yearbook Preseason All-Americans

This is where your head probably explodes even though it shouldn't.

Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports

Preseason All-America lists don't, in the words of Big & Rich, put any bang in my ying yang (if it does for you, please see a licensed physician). Preseason polls -- ranking teams, college boy -- are more interesting than the abstract exercise of assigning tiers of ability to particular players. Basically, you can create a fairly reasonable preseason All-America list by looking at the prior season's year-end All-America list, include all players with eligibility in the current season, and elevate a handful of players that were on lower-tier All-American lists. People would still lose their freaking minds over the thing, but it doesn't seem as appealing as thinking about how teams -- the true objects of our affection -- will look from a preseason basis.

I could be alone in that thought, which is fine: The things that intrigue me may not create combustion in your brain. That's cool. You like a little ting in your tang tang (again, that sounds like a potentially fatal medical condition). I can understand that. Which is why Inside Lacrosse published its 2015 Face-Off Yearbook Preseason All-America lists. 45 players earned either first, second, or third team preseason honors, a number that aligns with the high volume of players that the USILA is naming to its All-America lists at the end of the year. (Seriously: The USILA is getting out of control with the number of players it names to its All-America teams. In 2014, 14 players made the first team, 14 players made the second team, and 17 players made the third team. How these lists aren't capped at 12 players (maybe even 13 if you want a special category for a short-stick defensive midfielder) is insane.) Here's what the first team looks like:

Lyle Thompson Attack Senior Albany
Kevin Rice Attack Senior Syracuse
Matt Kavanagh Attack Junior Notre Dame
Wes Berg Attack Senior Denver
Myles Jones Midfield Junior Duke
Connor Buczek Midfield Senior Cornell
Deemer Class Midfield Junior Duke
Erik Adamson Midfield Senior Denver
Kevin Massa Face-Off Specialist Senior Bryant
Michael Pellegrino Long-Stick Midfield Senior Johns Hopkins
Tanner Scales Defense Junior Virginia
Goran Murray Defense Senior Maryland
Christian Burgdorf Defense Sophomore Denver
Brandon Mullins Defense R-Junior Syracuse
Gunnar Waldt Goalie R-Junior Bryant

You can find the second team list here and the third team list here. Otherwise, here are some brief notes on the first, second, and third teams:

  • Denver led the way with three first team selections, followed by Syracuse, Duke, and Bryant (each with two first team selections). 40 percent of the first team selections, however, came from schools that only put one player on the first team. From a conference perspective, the ACC dominated the first team with six of 15 total selections, comprising 40 percent of the preseason first team (the Big East was next closest with 20 percent of the first team comprised of league players. Somewhat surprisingly, the Big Ten put only two players on the first team -- Pellegrino (Hopkins) and Murray (Maryland). For a league with designs to challenge the ACC's perch atop the college lacrosse hierarchy, the league does not -- at least according to Face-Off Yearbook -- have the kind of depth in high-end talent as the ACC maintains.
  • Here's a conference and team breakdown of the three preseason All-America teams:
    ACC 16 36%
    Ivy 9 20%
    Big Ten 7 16%
    Big East 5 11%
    Patriot 4 9%
    NEC 2 4%
    America East 1 2%
    SoCon 1 2%
    Denver 5 11%
    Syracuse 4 9%
    Maryland 4 9%
    Notre Dame 3 7%
    Duke 3 7%
    Cornell 3 7%
    Virginia 3 7%
    North Carolina 3 7%
    Harvard 3 7%
    Bryant 2 4%
    Army 2 4%
    Princeton 2 4%
    Albany 1 2%
    Johns Hopkins 1 2%
    Loyola 1 2%
    Ohio State 1 2%
    Rutgers 1 2%
    Yale 1 2%
    Lehigh 1 2%
    Bellarmine 1 2%
    The ACC, much like it did with the first team, dominated the entirety of the non-honorable mention teams. In fact, the 16 players selected from the ACC matches the combined total of the Ivy League and Big Ten, and is more than the Big East, Patriot League, Northeast Conference, American East, and Southern Conference got combined. Division I lacrosse is in the ACC's orbit. Two other interesting points from this table: (1) All of the Big East's selections came from Denver; and (2) When's the last time that Johns Hopkins had just one player -- one! -- selected for first, second, or third team preseason honors?

What do you guys think about the preseason lists? Like 'em? Hate 'em? Want to burn them on the sun? The comments are yours to unload.