UConn Women Picked No. 1

UConn center Stefanie Dolson (US PRESSWIRE)

There weren't a lot of surprises at Big East women's basketball media day in New York City Thursday. Connecticut was picked to win the conference, with Notre Dame nipping on the heels of the Huskies. And UConn's Breanna Stewart was picked as Preseason Freshman of the Year.

Here's the news from the Big East release:

NEW YORK – Connecticut, the 2012 BIG EAST Championship tournament winner, was picked to win the 2012-13 BIG EAST women's basketball regular-season title. The selection was made by the league's 15 head coaches, who were not permitted to select their own teams.

The Huskies, who received 12 first-place votes, edged last year's regular-season champion, Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish received three first-place votes and were picked to finish second.

Louisville was selected to finish third, with St. John's picked fourth and Rutgers rounding out the top five.

Connecticut posted a 33-5 overall record last year, with three of its losses coming in conference play. The Huskies reached the NCAA Championship Final Four for the fifth-straight year, falling to Notre Dame. UConn will be led by unanimous Preseason All-BIG EAST selection Bria Hartley, preseason selection Stefanie Dolson and last year's Freshman of the Year and Sixth Man of the Year, Kaleena Mosqueda Lewis.

Notre Dame, which was 35-4 last year, will be led by Skylar Diggins, who was chosen for the second-consecutive year as the BIG EAST Preseason Player of the Year. The Fighting Irish won their first outright regular-season title last season with a 15-1 record. Notre Dame was chosen as a No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament last year and advanced to the National Championship game for the second-straight year. The trip to the tournament was the Fighting Irish's 17th consecutive.

2012-13 Preseason Coaches Poll

Points

1. Connecticut (12) 194

2. Notre Dame (3) 182

3. Louisville 167

4. St. John's 144

5. Rutgers 143

6. DePaul 138

7. Syracuse 105

8. Georgetown 104

9. USF 97

10. Villanova 78

11. Marquette 75 12. Cincinnati 61

13. Pittsburgh 31

Seton Hall 31

15. Providence 25

Preseason Player of the Year?Skylar Diggins, Notre Dame, Sr., G

Preseason Freshman of the Year?*Breanna Stewart, Connecticut, Fr., F

Preseason All-BIG EAST Team

Stefanie Dolson, Connecticut, Jr., C

*Bria Hartley, Connecticut, Jr., G

Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis, Connecticut, So., F

*Anna Martin, DePaul, Sr., G?

*Sugar Rodgers, Georgetown, Sr., G

*Shoni Schimmel, Louisville, Jr., G

*Skylar Diggins, Notre Dame, Sr., G?

Monique Oliver, Rutgers, Sr., F/C?

Nadirah McKenith, St. John's, Sr., G?

Shenneika Smith, St. John's, Sr.,

G?Kayla Alexander, Syracuse, Sr., C

Preseason All-BIG EAST Honorable Mention

Monique Reid, Louisville, Sr., F

?Laura Sweeney, Villanova, Sr., F:

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