KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Langston University men’s basketball entered the NAIA Men’s Basketball Coaches’ Top 25 Preseason Poll ranked fourth overall, the national office announced.
The Lions are the highest-rated team in the Sooner Athletic Conference and are led by second-year head coach Chris Wright. Langston opens their season on November 4 versus William Woods University at C.F. Gayles Field House.
- The NAIA Men’s Basketball Poll is for publicity purposes only and has no weight or bearing in the selection process for national championship field consideration
- The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences and Continental Athletic Conference (Independents)
- The Top 25 is determined by a points system based on how each voter ranks the best teams. A team receives 30 points for each first-place vote, 29 for second place and so on through the list
- The highest and lowest ranking for each team (a non-rating is considered a low ratings) is removed
- Teams that receive only one point in the ballot are not considered “receiving votes”
- For the first preseason poll, there is no column referencing a previous ranking, as polls are new and different from the ratings system
- Frequency of polls occur bi-weekly
- For the complete Top 25 polls calendar, click HERE
Langston’s Chris Wright took over a program that was 1-27 and 1-37 over the past two seasons. Under his guidance, the Lions finished an incredible 31-3 in 2022-2023. It’s one of the greatest single-season turnarounds in college basketball history.
“Last season Langston was 1-27. This season the Lions were 31-3. What else really needs to be said about the job Chris Wright has done,” said Joe Dwyer, President of CollegeInsider.com. “It’s without question one of the best, if not the best, single-season turnaround in college basketball history, at any level. Chris Wright is an excellent coach and a quality individual.”
In his first season, The Lions went 26-2 in the regular season, making history as the first HBCU to win the Sooner Athletic Conference regular-season title and the conference tournament title. Winning the SAC earned Langston a No. 2 seed in the NAIA National Tournament, where they would go on to post wins over Southern Oregon and Southwestern College, before falling to Georgetown KY in the round of 16.
Wright came to Langston after spending the previous four seasons as the head coach at Talladega College. During his tenure, the Tornadoes have compiled a 106-25 record and reached the NAIA National Tournament in all four seasons.