MACOMB, Ill. - The Western Illinois men's basketball team (19-6 overall, 11-3 league) remain at #19 in the CollegeInsider.com Mid-Major Top 25 poll Monday (Feb. 18).
The Fighting Leathernecks, who received 182 points, were rated #19 in last week's poll, and with several games left in the season, have already surpassed last season's win total of 18.
Two other Summit League teams rank in the poll, with South Dakota State at #17, and North Dakota State at #23.
CollegeInsider.com's complete top 25 poll can be found HERE.
The Leathernecks play host to Cleveland State Saturday at 7 p.m. as a part of the ESPN BracketBusters event, and then conclude regular season play at home versus Summit League members Kansas City and South Dakota.
Western is still battling for the program's first-ever Summit League regular season championship, and senior point guard Ceola Clark III says the fans are a big part of Western's home court advantage.
"Our fans are great, this year's support has been great," said Clark. " When we have a huge home crowd like we have recently, it gives us energy, they are a sixth man out there. Our fans give us the belief that we can overcome any obstacle as long as they have your back."
If the Leathernecks win the rest of their Summit League games, they will at least share the regular season title. If WIU wins out and South Dakota State loses at Omaha, the Leathernecks will capture sole possession of The Summit League Regular Season crown.
Clark also touched on the team's chance at winning the league's regular season title.
"Before the season even starts, the first goal we make is to win The Summit League regular season championship," said Clark. "It feels good to be sitting in the position we are in, having a chance to win out and earn the league's regular season crown. Winning a regular season championship is even harder than winning a tournament title in a lot of aspects because you have to play well for several months."
The Leathernecks are looking forward to their final three games of the season, all at home, prior to the conference tournament, and the home court advantage that comes with it.