Fourth-year head coach James Hicks returns just nine letterwinners from last year’s squad, including four starters, and just one wrestler, John Olivieri, who reached last year’s NAIA Championships.
The Phoenix have 13 true freshmen as well as a pair of transfers for the 2018-19 campaign.
“This is probably the youngest team in the conference. We will have more freshmen in our lineup this season than the past two years combined,” Hick said. “I’m looking forward to the journey with this group of hard-working young men.”
The University of the Cumberlands was picked first in the poll with five first-place votes and 46 points overall. Lindsey Wilson and Life University tied for second with 40 points, with the Blue Raiders earning the other two first-place votes, and Campbellsville was picked fourth with one first-place vote and 30 points.
Southeastern University was fifth with 29 points, followed by Cumberland University with 19 points. Brewton-Parker (11) and Midway University (9) rounded out the poll.
The Phoenix will open the season Nov. 3 at the Patriot Open in Williamsburg, Ky.