The Top 25 Women's College Soccer Programs

Last year's title contenders could meet again in 2014, but who will challenge them?

The 2014 NCAA Women’s soccer campaign is underway. Most teams have played two games so far this young season, and - as a followup to our preview of the NCAA men's soccer season earlier this week - we take a look here at this year's rankings and top programs for NCAA women's soccer. 

These rankings were updated August 26th following the opening weekend, and everything went according to plan aside from one major upset for North Carolina. While UCLA and Florida State (the two teams who squared off in the National Championship last year) took care of business, North Carolina dropped from the top five after a loss to Stanford. Things won’t get easier for the Tar Heels who play number one UCLA this Friday.

Below we have the rankings and a quick outlook on some of the nation's top teams this season:

UCLA 

Head Coach Amanda Cromwell and staff obviously did a great job getting their players to buy into her system on their way to a national championship. The stout defense from the Bruins conceded only eight goals all of last season and the PAC 12 squad figures to be right back in the championship hunt this season. They return many of their top producing players that assures plenty of experience and depth for the Bruins. We wouldn’t be shocked to see Cromwell’s bunch right back in the championship hunt in Boca Raton come December. 

Florida State 

The Seminoles have one of the most lethal attacks in the country. Led by a pair of seniors, Dagny Brynjarsdottir and Jamia Fields who combined for 51 points last season, Florida State will surely be a force. On the other hand, the Noles will have to replace a pair of top draft picks to the NWSL in defender Kassey Kallman and goalkeeper Kelsey Wys.

Virginia 

After a solid 24-1-1 campaign in 2013, the Cavaliers returned to the Women’s College Cup for the first time since 1991. Just like their ACC counterparts at FSU, Virginia won’t have a problem scoring goals this season, but will need to replace some key figures on their back line. Addressing these replacements will decide their fate this upcoming season. On September 28th, they will travel to Tallahassee to take on the Seminoles - which could possibly be a national championship preview.

North Carolina 

The Queens of the college soccer world, the Tar Heels have 21 championships, an astonishing 18 more then the next best program. Last season was a very un-Tar-Heel-like year, and this year they aren’t off to the best start. Falling to Stanford in their first game, the Tar Heels need to find a way to replace the goal scoring void left by now NWSL players Crystal Dunn and Kealia Ohai. The two accounted for half of the team's 50 goals last season. Their defense is championship caliber, but until they figure out their offensive woes, the ladies from Chapel Hill will have another disappointing season, by their standards at least.

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