St. Thomas Baseball received nine of 11 first-place votes and was picked for first in the preseason balloting of MIAC coaches.
St. John's and Bethel each received one vote and finished 2-3 in the poll.
Coach Chris Olean's Tommies -- ranked No. 8 nationally -- return a dozen pitching or field starters from a conference co-champion team of last spring.
UST batted .296 and averaged nearly six runs over its final 34 contests, and was not shutout in any of its 47 games.
St. Thomas ended a six-game losing string to region power UW-Whitewater, the nation's No. 2-ranked team, with a 7-2 postseason victory.
St. Thomas has six of its first eight games coming against teams ranked in the Collegiate Baseball D-III top 40.
UST is scheduled to have US Bank Stadium twinbills March 6 (against UW-La Crosse) and March 10 (against UW-Oshkosh). Weather permitting, UST will travel to Waverly, Iowa, for four games March 16-18 against ranked Wartburg and Concordia-Chicago.
St. Thomas will also play seven games in Florida on spring break between March 24-28, and open its home and MIAC season Saturday March 31 against Bethel.