Preseason football polls announced

Tabor College head football coach Mike Gardner speaks at the KCAC Football Media Day last week.Preseason coaches? and media polls have been released for football following the KCAC Football Media Day Aug. 6.

The Tabor College Bluejays, ranked eighth in the NAIA Football Coaches? Preseason Top 25 poll, came in second in the coaches? poll with two first-place votes and 69 total votes.

Sterling topped the coaches? poll with five first-place votes and 74 total votes.

Friends (67 total votes) received two first-place votes, while Ottawa (66) received one.

The coaches? poll was rounded out by Southwestern (42), Bethany (40), Kansas Wesleyan (27), McPherson (27), Saint Mary (24) and Bethel (14).

In the media poll, Tabor came in third, despite gaining the most first-place votes with seven. The Bluejays tallied 151 total votes.

Ottawa topped the media poll with three first-place votes and 156 total votes, and Friends was a close second with five and 155.

Sterling came in fourth with three and 150.

Completing the media poll were Southwestern (91), Bethany (66), McPherson (66), Saint Mary (65), Kansas Wesleyan (58) and Bethel (32).

Tabor ended last season with a 10-3 overall record, 7-2 in the conference, to finish second behind Sterling at 8-1. Tabor gained the KCAC?s first post-season victory since 2009 with a win over Benedictine in the opening round of the NAIA Football Championship Series.

Also earning a spot in the NAIA preseason Top 25 poll are:?Ottawa (14), Sterling (15) and Friends (19).

The Bluejays return one first-team and one second-team All-KCAC athlete this season.

Three Tabor athletes have been named to the 2014 preseason team:?offensive lineman Jess Croley, defensive lineman Dylan Delk and linebacker Ben Gardner, all juniors.

Tabor is scheduled to open the 2014 season Sept. 6 when Nebraska Wesleyan University comes to Hillsboro for a 2 p.m. contest.

Conference play will begin Sept. 20 when Tabor travels to the University of Saint Mary for a 1:30 p.m. game.

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