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Nov. 5, 2003

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State women’s basketball team earned a No. 15 ranking in the USA Today/ESPN/WBCA Preseason Women’s Basketball Coaches Poll. The Buckeyes were 22-10 last season, garnered a No. 4 seed in the NCAA tournament and made it to the finals of the Big Ten tournament under first-year head coach Jim Foster. Ohio State returns four starters, including two all-conference players, Caity Matter (Jr., Bluffton, Ohio/Bluffton) and Kim Wilburn (So., Southfield, Mich./Detroit Country Day), the 2000 Big Ten Freshman of the Year, LaToya Turner (Sr., Pickerington, Ohio/Pickerington), and adds three decorated high school players – Stephanie Blanton (Lancaster, Ohio/Lancaster), Brandie Hoskins (Dayton, Ohio/Chaminade-Julienne) and Jessica Davenport (Columbus, Ohio/Columbus Independence) – in addition to sophomore transfer Michelle Muoz (So., Mason, Ohio/University of Tennessee).

Ohio State, who was 14-0 last year in Columbus, opens the season against Ohio University at 7 p.m. Nov. 21 in Value City Arena. The Buckeyes play eight of the first nine games at home before traveling west to take on UCLA and No. 18 UC Santa Barbara right before the New Year. Foster’s team will open Big Ten play with a Jan. 2 home contest against Wisconsin. The Buckeyes then will participate in the Big Ten/Big East Challenge at No. 17 Rutgers Jan. 4 before diving into conference competition. Three Big Ten schools (Penn State, Purdue and Minnesota) joined Ohio State in the Top 25 poll

The first regular-season poll will be available the afternoon of Nov. 18.

Total Previous Rk School (Record) Points Rank 1. Connecticut (40) (37-1) 1000 1 2. Duke (35-2) 932 4 3. Texas (29-6) 896 3 4. Tennessee (33-5) 883 2 5. Kansas State (29-5) 824 10 6. Texas Tech (29-6) 727 6 7. Stanford (27-5) 688 14 8. Penn State (26-9) 630 12 9. Purdue (29-6) 621 7 10. LSU (30-4) 605 5 11. Georgia (21-10) 550 11 12. Louisiana Tech (31-3) 507 9 13. Minnesota (25-6) 472 13 14. North Carolina (28-6) 467 15 15. Ohio State (21-10) 314 NR 16. Notre Dame (21-11) 291 21 17. Rutgers (21-8) 276 NR 18. UC-Santa Barbara (27-5) 272 22 19. Utah (24-7) 271 NR 20. Colorado (24-8) 241 19 21. Oklahoma (19-13) 184 NR 22. Arizona (22-9) 153 NR 23. TCU (20-14) 150 NR 24. Virginia (17-14) 133 NR 25. Auburn (23-11) 109 NR

Others receiving votes: George Washington (25-7) 108; Boston College (22-9) 94; Villanova (28-6) 70; Virginia Tech (22-10) 64; Vanderbilt (22-10) 57; DePaul (22-10) 53; South Carolina (23-8) 48; Washington (22-8) 44; Mississippi State (24-8) 29; Arkansas (22-11) 28; Michigan State (17-11) 27; Cincinnati (23-8) 21; Liberty (26-4) 18; Old Dominion (20-11) 14; Creighton (24-9) 11; Houston (15-13) 11; New Mexico (24-9) 10; Western Kentucky (22-9) 10; Chattanooga (26-5) 9; Southwest Missouri State (18-13) 9; Clemson (14-15) 8; Wisconsin-Green Bay (28-4) 8; North Carolina-Wilmington (22-6) 7; Saint Joseph’s (19-11) 7; Charlotte (21-9) 6; Colorado State (20-13) 6; Arizona State (16-14) 4; Pepperdine (22-8) 4; Xavier (20-10) 4; Iowa (17-15) 3; Florida State (17-13) 2; Oregon (12-16) 2; Toledo (20-10) 2; UCLA (18-11) 2; Brigham Young (19-12) 1; Holy Cross (24-8) 1; Middle Tennessee (18-12) 1; Montana (20-10) 1.