The North Carolina Tar Heels men’s soccer team will join the women’s team with a top five national preseason ranking.
The United Soccer Coaches Poll place the men’s team at #4 in their preseason rankings. This preseason ranking of fourth matches the team’s final standing in the national poll at the conclusion of the 2020 season.
Four ACC teams are ranked in the top ten, with Pitt one slot ahead of Carolina in the preseason poll. Clemson and Wake Forest are #6 and #7 in the preseason coaches' poll.
Virginia Tech is #15 to round out the ACC representation in the top 25, as while Virginia and Notre Dame received votes they did not crack the top 25.
In-state neighbors UNC Charlotte and High Point University earned the No. 18 and No. 24 spots in the rankings. Although failing to make the top 25, Campbell, UNC Wilmington, and UNC Greensboro earned votes.
UNC will return nine of their 11 starters from the squad that reached last year’s NCAA College Cup semifinals and will look to build on their impressive postseason run from last season.
After a disappointing opening round loss in the ACC Tournament, the Tar Heels won three straight games to reach the national semifinal. Two of those NCAA Tournament wins were against national seeds.
UNC hosts an exhibition against defending national champs Marshall on August 15. The Thundering Herd eliminated Carolina from the College Cup before going on to win it all.
The first game of the Heels’ regular season is at home on August 26 versus Bucknell.