Mount Union was tabbed as the favorite during preseason voting by the Ohio Athletic Conference track and field coaches to win the 2017 OAC men's track and field outdoor title.
The Purple Raiders, who won their sixth straight and conference record 33rd title in 2016, tallied 81 points with nine first votes followed by Ohio Northern in second place with 73 points and the remaining first place vote.
Otterein and John Carroll (61 points) are tied for third place while Heidelberg (44 points) rounds out the top five.
Mount Union has six athletes returning that earned all-conference honors a year ago with a top three finish headlined by junior Tyler Neff (Navarre/Fairless).
At the 2017 OAC Indoor Championships, Neff set a new conference record and won the 400 meter title with a time of 48.88, won the 200 meters with a time of 22.32 and was a member of the winning 4x200 relay. For his efforts, Neff was named the OAC Indoor Sprint Athlete of the Meet.
Three Purple Raiders return who won titles at last year's outdoor championships.
Jaquill Scott (East Hanover, N.J./Hanover Park) won the javelin, Connor Troyer (Sugarcreek/Garaway) won the 110 meter hurdles and Louis Berry (Pittsburgh, Pa./Shady Side Academy) won the 100 meter dash.
Berry and Andrew Shrewsbury (Woodville/Woodmore) were also part of a conference champion 4x100 meter relay team from 2016.
The OAC Track & Field Championships will be held April 28-29 at Muskingum University in New Concord, Ohio.
OAC Track Coaches Preseason Men's Poll
1. Mount Union 81 (9)
2. Ohio Northern (1) 73
3t. Otterbein 61
3t. John Carroll 61
5. Heidelberg 44
6. Baldwin Wallace 41
7. Capital 35
8. Wilmington 21
9. Marietta 20
10. Muskingum 10