FGCU redshirt junior guard Whitney Knight was named the Atlantic Sun Conference preseason Player of the Year, while FGCU received six of eight coach votes and 11 of 16 media votes to repeat as regular-season league champions.
The Eagles, winners of four straight regular-season titles and five of the past six, are trailed by fierce rival Stetson in both polls. The Hatters received the two remaining first-place coach votes and four of five media votes not given to FGCU.
Northern Kentucky – which beat visiting FGCU 67-43 last season to snap a 44-game A-Sun regular-season winning streak, then the longest such conference streak in the nation – was third in both polls.
Lipscomb, which was picked sixth of eight teams in both polls, received one first-place media vote despite finishing ninth in the league last year at 6-24 overall and 3-15 in league play.
The A-Sun dropped from 10 to eight teams this season.
Knight, an all-conference first-team selection last year and an all-freshman selection in 2011-2012, joined FGCU redshirt senior Jenna Cobb and junior Stephanie Haas on the 10-player preseason squad.
FGCU and Stetson, which has the league’s preseason Defender of the Year in sophomore center Amber Porter, each put three players on the preseason squad. Northern Kentucky, Kennesaw State, Lipscomb and USC Upstate had one selection each.