Football Lions eager for 2012 season
NAIA lists Pre-Season Football Poll
SAGU opens camp on August 13
WAXAHACHIE, Texas -- The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics released the 2012 Pre-Season Football Top 25 Coaches Poll from their Kansas City, Missouri headquarters.
It includes two opponents of Southwestern Assemblies of God University including Bethany College, who will kickoff the season at Lumpkins Stadium on September 1. (The entire poll is posted below.)
The Lions, 4-6 last fall, will have five home games, three in the first four weeks of the season. Behind veteran Head Coach Jesse Godding, optimism is high.
The squad returns key offensive performers and will welcome a new Offensive Coordinator, Frank Tristan.
The tandem of junior QB Reid Golson and WR Nic Morphew (both from Grandview, Tx / Howard Payne Univ, Grandview HS), along with RB’s Sean Haynes (Katy, Tx / Katy HS) and Cade Leuschner (Waco, Tx / Robinson HS) and four veteran linemen in Michael Hendon (Abilene, Tx / Abilene Christian School), Peter Akorikin (Dallas, Tx / Conrad HS), Paul Sielski (N. Richland Hills, Tx / Richland HS) and Mitchell Grimes (McKinney, Tx / McKinney North HS) will anchor the offense.
John Allen, the Defensive Coordinator, will re-tool his troops around a quick, young quiver of sharp arrows, led by the likes of linemen Richard Adewola (Richmond, Tx / B.F. Terry HS) and D.J. Johnson (Springfield, Mo / Parkview HS), linebacker Rockie Davis (Santa Fe, Tx / Santa Fe HS) and defensive backs Brad Heathcock (Frisco, Tx / Wakeland HS), Nick Ekanem (San Antonio, Tx / B.F. Terry HS), Frank Agbemaple and Eric Smith (both of Euless, Tx / Trinity HS).
SAGU opens at home against Bethany College, who edged the Lions, 29-21, a year ago in Lindsborg, Kansas.
The Swedes finished 8-3 in 2011. They are led by senior-to-be running back Junior Allen (2,836 rush yards in two seasons at Bethany), who led the nation in all-purpose yards per game (170.9) and was second in rushing (1,404 yards) in 2011.
Quarterback Darby House also returns for his senior season after throwing for 2,475 yards and 21 touchdowns last season. They return 15 starters.
The Lions will travel to face #21 ranked Langston University (Okla) in the ninth game of the season, November 3. SAGU's complete schedule is available at www.sagu.edu/athletics/football.
The LU Lions (7-3) are expected to reign in the Central States Football League now that both Southern Nazarene University and Northwest Oklahoma State University have left the NAIA.
SNU has been accepted as a Division II member in the NCAA. NWOSU has yet to land in the same division.
Replacing the two in the CSFL will be Wayland Baptist University (Tex) and Oklahoma Baptist University (fall of 2013).
Langston returns 14 starters and several highly touted offensive linemen. Their running game, which ranked 25th in the nation last year, must replace their all-time leader rusher, Carlos Ross.
SAGU players will report to fall camp on Monday, August 13 at 8:00 AM.
Three weeks later the Purple Pride plays host to Bethany at the 10,000 seat Lumpkins Stadium.
In last year's game against the Swedes, the Lions scored first on a 30-yard Golson to senior David Howard (Dayton, Tx / Dayton HS) hook-up. They were within 16-14 at the half and 23-21 after three quarters.
They held a 22-15 edge in first downs and narrowly outushed BC, 129-127. Golson scored on a short run and Agbemaple (pronounced AGE-may-pul) returned a fumble 11 yards for six.
The game, and all home dates, will be broadcast HD. Viewers can access the games at no cost at SAGUtv.
SAGU will also provide fans with digital play-by-play (on-line) this season, a service referred to as LiveStats.
NAIA 2012 Pre-Season Top 25 Coaches Poll
|School (State)||Mascot||2011 Record||Total Poll Points|
|1. Saint Xavier University (IL)||Cougars||14-1||340|
|2. Carroll College (MT)||Fighting Saints||13-2||327|
|3. Marian University (IN)||Knights||12-1||313|
|4. Georgetown College (KY)||Tigers||12-1||301|
|5. MidAmerica Nazarene University (KS)||Pioneers||10-3||285|
|6. University of Saint Francis (IN)||Cougars||9-3||272|
|7. University of Saint Francis (IL)||Fighting Saints||11-3||257|
|8. Morningside College (IA)||Mustangs||9-3||249|
|9. Missouri Valley College||Vikings||9-2||240|
|10. Ottawa University (KS)||Braves||9-3||208|
|11. Benedictine College (KS)||Ravens||9-3||206|
|12. Bethel University (TN)||Wildcats||8-3||194|
|13. William Penn University (IA)||Statesmen||9-2||182|
|14. Northwestern College (IA)||Red Raiders||9-2||171|
|15. Valley City State University (ND)||Vikings||9-2||145|
|16. Grand View University (IA)||Vikings||8-4||137|
|17. Eastern Oregon University||Mountaineers||8-3||127|
|18. Doane College (NE)||Tigers||8-2||122|
|19. Baker University (KS)||Wildcats||7-3||113|
|20. St. Ambrose University (IA)||Bees||7-3||96|
|21. Langston University (OK)||Lions||7-3||75|
|22. University of the Cumberlands (KY)||Patriots||7-3||69|
|23. Cumberland University (TN)||Bulldogs||7-3||56|
|24. Bethany College (KS)||Swedes||8-3||32|
|25. Lindsey Wilson College (KY)||Blue Raiders||7-3||27|
Others Receiving Votes: Campbellsville University (Ky) Tigers (7-5) 9; Friends University (Kan) Falcons (5-5) 1; Olivet Nazarene University (Ill) Tigers (5-6) 1; Montana State-Northern University Lights (5-5) 1; Midland University (Neb) Warriors (6-4) 1; Hastings College (Neb) Broncos (6-4) 1.
Saint Xavier University received all 15 first place votes.
The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences and independents.