KINGSTON, R.I. - The Rhode Island golf team has been picked to finish seventh in the Atlantic 10 preseason poll, released by the conference Friday afternoon.
The top three programs in the poll were separated by a total of just five points. Dayton - which received five first-place votes - was identified as the preseason favorite with 109 points. The Flyers placed third at last season's championship. VCU was next, with 107 points and one first-place vote, followed by 2017 champion Richmond, which collected five first-place votes and a total of 104 points.
Rounding out the top five were George Washington (91 points) and Davidson (69 points), followed by George Mason (65 points) and Rhode Island (51 points).
Rhode Island is led by junior Dawson Jones, who finished the fall season with a team-best 72.7 stroke average. Freshmen Bobby Weise and Chris Francoeur, along with sophomore Burke Barsamian, also competed in all five fall events for the Rams. Wise and Francoeur each collected an A-10 Rookie of the week award along the way, while redshirt sophomore Jason Short turned in Rhody's low round of the fall with a second-round 68 at the Hartford Hawks Invitational.
Rhode Island opens the spring season April 1 at the Coca-Cola Invitational in Hellertown, Pa.
2018 Atlantic 10 Men's Golf Championship Poll
1. Dayton - 109 (5)
2. VCU - 107 (1)
3. Richmond - 104 (5)
4. George Washington - 91
5. Davidson - 69
6. George Mason - 65
7. Rhode Island - 51
8. St. Bonaventure - 43
9. Fordham - 42
10. Saint Joseph's - 29
11. La Salle - 16