Feb. 22, 2001
NOTRE DAME, Ind. -- Notre Dame is number one once again, this time in men's fencing -- and that marks the third Irish varsity athletic team that has held the top spot at some point in 2000-01.
Coach Yves Auriol's men's fencing squad, which finished the regular season with a 25-0 record, took over the number-one position Wednesday in the second poll of the season issued by the United States Fencing Coaches Association.
That means the eight-foot lighted numeral one atop Grace Hall on the Notre Dame campus remains lit at night -- and the "#1" flag in front of the Joyce Center remains in place.
After ranking second in the USFCA preseason poll, the Irish jumped to number one following their perfect regular season -- and they take that mark into the Midwest Fencing Conference team and individual championships Saturday and Sunday at Notre Dame. The Irish women's fencing squad, with a 21-4 record, currently stands sixth.
Notre Dame's women's soccer team began the number-one parade with an 11-week stay atop the polls last fall. The Irish eventually lost in the NCAA semifinals to eventual champion North Carolina.
Then, the Irish women's basketball squad took over the top spot in the polls following a Jan. 15 home win over top-rated Connecticut -- and stayed there for four weeks. Notre Dame currently ranks second in both women's basketball polls.
Rankings for other Notre Dame teams currently competing include 18th in men's basketball, 15th in women's swimming (best ever in that sport), 11th in baseball, 14th in softball (best ever in that sport), 26th in men's tennis and sixth in women's tennis (best ever in that sport).