The Nashville Hornets will begin the boys basketball season tied for first in the Associated Press Class 2A preseason state rankings, which were released Tuesday.
Led by 6-foot-6 sophomore Royce Newman, the Hornets (24-8 last season) received five first place votes and were tied with Rockridge for the No. 1 spot.
Carlyle, which should be one of the favorites in the Cahokia Conference Mississippi Division, was fifth in 2A and Central was 14th.
Cahokia finished second at the Class 3A state tournament last spring and begins this season ranked No. 2 behind North Chicago. Althoff was 15th in the preseason 3A poll.
Edwardsville has a lot of talent back from a 4A state tourney qualifier last season and the voters recognized that by picking the Tigers sixth in the preseason ranking.
Fellow Southwestern Conference powerhouse East St. Louis came in 10th in the initial poll with O'Fallon and Belleville East also receiving votes.
Gibault, coming off state championships in baseball and boys soccer and a sectional final appearance in basketball, was seventh in the Class 1A preseason poll. Perennial state tourney contender Madison was ninth with Okawville also receiving votes.