Inside D2Football - Season Preview

August 20th, 2023 7:00pm

Inside D2Football - Season Preview


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thank you [Music]

it has been 246 days since Ferris State went back to back by defeating Scott

Colorado School of Mines in the 2022 Division II Championship no team has won

three in a row since North Alabama did that in 1993 94 and 95. do the Bulldogs

have what it takes to complete the task this year welcome everybody to the kickoff of the

2023 season with Chuck Bittner Chris Ferguson Tony Nicolette Justin Polizzi

Matt wawicki I am Brandon Meisner thank you very much for joining us today so

which teams do the post posters believe will have uh uh the ability and

excuse me do you think we'll be in the uh I'm sorry what poll do pollster stick will be three in a row for Ferris State

and uh also when it comes to the ore diggers what are their chances to climb to the top of the mountain this year

where is your team uh going to end up stay with us and find out let's get this

thing started right now so coming in at number 25

it's the CSU Pueblo or um Thunder wolves they were eight and

CSU Pueblo

four last year and finished second in the armac well Brandon I I like Ferris State's

chances to repeat better than you get in the opening right there but anyway

um guys looking looking at uh CSU Pueblo uh there's a real good chance this this

group makes a splash uh philveiel brand new head coach

um takes the place of John riston long time head coach who will will still be around uh he's with the athletic

department yet and uh I really think that the amount of talent that that the

new head coach was able to acquire through the portal um guys who have been very productive uh

with other squads in D2 uh guys like chance Fuller he brings in from Ford

Hayes who's been an all-league player twice the MIAA um you've got guys like Adrian Soto who

also comes over from Hayes who was an all uh an MIAA all-conference player as

well he brings him two along with Howard Russell from Eastern New Mexico uh

running back we had over five hundred yards last season uh and then a guy who I think May burst on the scene a little

bit I was being recruited pretty heavily by different squads uh in the Midwest

and ends up landing at uh at Pueblo Reggie ratslaff who was a top Juco uh

receiver in the country a year ago and uh you know he brings to them 1300 yards

and 18 scores from where he came from and I look at that offense the offensive

pieces that he brings in along with the fact he's got Andrew cook a whiteout who

caught 12 touchdowns a year ago and you know you pair that with a few uh Elite

100 defensive players that they have they lose some guys on the front you know the front uh front seven but I

really think that there's a chance that this squad's going to be able to go ahead and challenge um and and really make a case to to go

right up against mines and play them a little closer than they did in their contests a year ago

all right very good let's move on to number 24. it's Davenport they were eight and three last year and they


finished third in the gliac yeah Brandon so uh Sparky mckeown's uh

got things right on scheduled for Davenport I mean that was only their sixth I believe team in in school history uh after a few years in NAIA and

then moving into D2 and the gliac uh so to be able to get uh a top end Finish within the gliac and a playoff berth

after an eight no start uh is a great result for for the Panthers uh they do

return their quarterback and Jason Whitaker uh to lead the offense uh they did actually move the ball pretty

effectively throughout most of the year last year uh and they get Cliff Jenkins back at tailback as well uh they did

pick up uh um uh Myron Harris uh transfer from Wayne State who was the second Team all League performer uh for

the Warriors last year uh and they also picked up a thousand yard receiver in the transfer portal uh Peyton Brown from

Lake Erie which you know a thousand yard guy from Lake Erie must be a guy who can actually do some things so that's a good

pickup for them I think where Davenport's gonna have some questions uh to answer is on the defensive side of

the ball um you know they gave up between 29 30 points a game last year they actually allowed uh 24 points or

more seven times in their 11 contests so uh if there's a side of the ball where there may be a question mark as they uh

come into the season that's probably it uh they did snag Julius Wilkerson in the transfer portal also from Wayne State uh

who is a second Team all T ogliac performer last year and you know in a league where you had Conor near and Abe

Swanson and guys like that uh you know taking all the all the linebacker plot that shows you how good Wilkerson is

um and their schedule sets up well for them to actually replicate what they asked you they don't really play uh the

toughest part of their schedule other than Bowie State in week two uh they normally face that meet the schedule till they get sagging off Ferris and

Grand Valley and success to finish things out very good moving on to number 23 Lenore

Ryan the Bears were 8-3 last year they were tied for first in the sac Piedmont

Division if the Bears were young last year on offense they returned some of those top

players this year led by Dwayne McGee rushed for 900 yards and 11 scores last

year Junior quarterback Sean Sean White threw for over 200 yards and seven of

their last nine games 18 touchdowns and seven interceptions top receiving Target

Keelan Parsons is also back he's been over 500 yards last two seasons along

with 10 scores offensively they're looking pretty good and don't don't count the defense yet either guys on

defense John Ross May linebacker who's on who's been on our All-American watch list is back with 75 tackles and eight

tackles for loss last year uh defensive lineman Andre Jefferson he's 6-2 275 at

the D tackle position and he's only a junior total 13 sacks a year ago he's a

top defensive lineman here in the division two level and and I think the schedule also is going to shape up good

for the Bears this year they don't start out with Ferris State like they did a year ago and said they start with Saint

Augustine and Fayetteville State before they get into conference play there's the conference they're going to

play three of their toughest conference games on the road at Limestone at Newberry and at Wingate but um and I

think coach Jacobs uh he has won in the postseason at Notre Dame college is one of the winningest coaches in division

two actively right now uh so this squad is probably one of the top the top teams

in the South Atlantic conference for 2023 guys very good right number 22

Virginia Union

Virginia Union they were 9-2 last year they finished second in the CIAA North

and you can't talk about Virginia Union without talking about that man on the screen Jada Byers uh who was a Harlan

Hill finalist uh last year uh you know surrounding him there are some question

remarks um certainly on offense the quarterback from last year Jakari Grant uh graduated and uh and then also John

Giles their leading receiver uh actually transferred to West Florida so you know

two two questions to try to get some pressure off of Jada Byers um uh with the passing game also they

did lose a couple of offensive linemen to graduation as well uh so you know

certainly some places some pieces that need to be replaced what I will note though is that um uh defense and special

teams have a lot coming back especially offensive line with Isaac Anderson Armani burden

um the kicker Brady Myers and the punter uh Marva Holmes very solid uh to keep

some of those offenses at Bay and having to travel some pretty pretty long yards

you know if there's one one thing that Virginia Union will certainly need to focus on going into this year probably

turnovers uh probably a little bit too much turnovers for a top 25 team

um but the schedule is is certainly favorable for them coming out the gate with uh Morehouse and and then Shaw in a

non-conference game so that's Virginia Union very good all right and number 21


is Indianapolis the Greyhounds were 9-2 last year they finished first in the

glvc yeah UND was a unanimous pick by the coaches in the glvc to repeat as the

conference champion and it's pretty easy to see why they've got about eight starters back on offense I love their

offensive line there's a lot of depth and experience there they have a returning quarterback Connor Kenneth and

they actually added some depth at the quarterback position as well with the transfer from Hillsdale so they've got a

lot of experience a lot of depth back on the offensive side of the football now they did lose one of the best players in

program history Toriano Clinton who's actually getting a shot of the NFL right now but they were able to backfill that

position with an outstanding transfer a running back by the name of John Lewis from Birmingham Southern he was actually

a first team division three All-American a year ago LED division three in rushing

yards per game so uh pretty great to backfill a player like Toriano Clinton with an All-American coming from

division three and on the defensive side of the football they also have a lot of experience back about seven starters

including two uh players on the defensive side of the ball that are on our Elite 100 watch list so it's just a

really good looking team coming back for you India obvious choice to um to potentially repeat as a glbc champion

they do have some tough games I'm already looking at that week three game against Saginaw Valley State that was uh

really kind of a measuring stick game for them outside of the conference last year that did not go well

um so excited to see if they can improve their Fortune stepping outside of league play this year


very good number 20 is Benedict they were 11-1 last year and they won the siac

championship yeah and they're uh certainly voted to repeat this year but they're certainly

going to have to do so without Eric Phoenix their quarterback last year who led that offense transfer to Murray

State you know it's possible that somebody like Aeneas Dennis who was at shorter who did some um pretty good

offense at shorter they come in there to step in as as they transfer but you know

whoever lines up a quarterback certainly is going to have a wealth at running back with uh DeAndre duhart and uh Noah

Zaire Scotland uh what's particularly interesting is one of the shrinks going to be the defensive line uh Lou danellis

is going to be on there but he's got two other guys who should uh also be on that line uh to to go to start the season so

you know uh Benedict went um transfer shopping quite a bit um to try to show up their offensive

line that's one that they also lost quite a few players uh in order to try to get them back to that championship

game and hopefully back to playoffs uh so uh that's that's Benedict

Ferg let me ask you do you think that you know Benedict it felt like they kind of came out of nowhere and all of a sudden really you know undefeated

regular season you know put themselves in a great spot for the postseason it didn't really play out you know in just

that way for them but they really put themselves on the map last year you think that they're gonna be able to

repeat again or what what are your candid thoughts uh after taking a look over on them well um I think that

they've certainly got the horsepower to do it um I think the the only issue is is you've got a rapidly improving top half

of the SIC uh Fort Valley state is going to be really tough out this year uh even

with losing Emmanuel Wilson um to the NFL and then also you can't really count out Albany State you can't

count out Tuskegee those teams are are trying to reload and Albany in particular has quite a bit coming back

on offense so there's some tough outs there but I tell you one thing the top

half the schedule looks extremely manageable for them so you really won't get a read on Benedict until probably a

little half of the season very good number 19 West Georgia the

West Georgia

Wolves were eight and two last year third in the Gulf South yeah the Wolves were ranked number one

last year um nationally with over 500 yards offensively per game however

quarterback Harrison Frost has graduated um and they also have a lot to replace on that side of the ball it's really

they don't really know yet who's going to take take snaps under center for the Wolves as of yet look for the defense to

be pretty strong for West Georgia this year is gonna have to keep them in some games like until they can get their

footing offensively um I think there's a lot of um they're going to play with a chip on their shoulder this year you know I feel

I think they feel like they were left out of the playoffs a year ago I think they have a lot to prove and you couple that with some some holes on the offense

for for the for the Wolves I think West Georgia is um they're going to be tough to handle in the Gulf South Conference I

think there's some question marks in that conference this year so I I expect West Georgia to to make a little bit of

a run here down the stretch particularly late in the season guys all right Justin we're going to come


right back to you because winga is ranked number 18. they were 11-3 last year and finished tied for first in the

Piedmont Division of the South Atlanta conference yeah last year you could say the Piedmont was the tougher of the two

sides in that division um particularly late in the season you know Wingate had one of the top defenses

nationally in 2022 and and probably one of the best college defenses I've seen in a long time I got to see got to see

them play a couple times in person but um and it propelled them to two playoff wins they had to go on the road and and

when in tough environments and their defense I think carried them we talk about all time defense defensive travels

and it did for them last year uh fortunately when they went down to West Florida last year just a little bit too much Firepower

um and they just couldn't keep up offensively um however Wingate does return to a

couple guys on that defense last year um with with Trey Morrison kind of being

the leader of that group uh quarterback wise some question marks going into the season right now for winget the offense

was a little stagnant particularly late in the season last year they're consistent um in what they do they've lost a fair

amount of guys on the offensive side of the ball so it's going to be it's gonna be interesting to see what they can do offensively and if they were able to to

kind of get get in the transfer portal a little bit and bolster some of that on the offensive side of the ball

yeah I just want to know that when I was doing some of my analysis um for the CR double a quite a few folks

um actually transferred out of the program and I kind of Wonder a little bit about depth um for them yeah that's a that's a great

question Ferg and and I think um I I know exactly what you're talking about I think that's a question but I think it's

gonna be a question for a lot of people guys um I think it's I think a lot of people have been hit by the transfer portal and

you know helped by the transfer portal so we know they lost some guys it is the question to me is who are they able to

bring in was able to replace some of that depth and build that depth chart back up

Emporia State

right coming in at number 17 the Emporia State Hornets they were nine and three last

year and finished third in the MIAA yeah and here you can't talk about Emporia without talking about the crafty

Lefty uh and Braden Gleason also a fantasy football uh Titan out there so

just want to drop that in the notes uh but you know he is surrounded by quite a bit of a cast particularly at running

back uh they did lose their um leading wide receiver but the the number two and number three options are

coming back uh you know folks this is a high-powered offense particularly through the air it's very very potent

um quite a bit coming back as well on defense although they do lose uh two of

their top linebackers uh but you know all the other parts of that defense

especially on the defensive line and defensive back um quite a bit coming back for them so

um you know one thing with Emporia is simply that uh they were in a lot of

close games uh last year um they had Pitt State uh lost by by one

point uh and and sometimes they end up having to play from behind um and so the question is can they

Prosper uh can they live a Prosperity here uh and and get to that next level and get into the playoffs but they're

certainly going to have some challenges particularly in the first half of the year all right very good

Slippery Rock

number 16 Slippery Rock a record of ten and three last year they finished first

in the psac West yeah this is a program that's gotten really comfortable being in our top 25

uh poll over the last decade they've won or tied for the psac west division and eight of the last 11 years and they have

a lot of experience coming back in their 2023 roster they've got about 19 players that started at least five games a year

ago their entire offensive line is back which is a huge asset for this rock offense they've got Chris Dior running

back a very experienced Ball Carrier Kyle sheets is probably one of the top returning wide receivers in the country

now they will have a new starting quarterback I know a Grover graduated after last year's season The Rock will

have a new starting quarterback on our center now historically they've had a lot of success integrating transfers at

the quarterback position a little bit of a different approach this year they're actually going to go with um Braden Long

he's a 6-3 junior he's been in the program since coming out of high school so he was the backup last year got a

little bit of experience in about five or six games and looks like he's going to be qb1 heading into the season so if

he plays well I I think they're going to have a chance to be a top 10 team by by late in the season and he's going to

have a great Supporting Cast around him to uh to help adapt that starting role so a little bit less coming back on

defense but if they can backfill a few holes in the defensive line I I really like what the Slippery Rock team can be

early in the season right and a team that always plays good defense is coming in at number 15.


Harding was 9-2 last year finished second in the GAC

yeah brand this is a a squad that just you know uh their their culture is such

where you don't see much turnover and things like the portal they they really have things uh kind of a family

atmosphere there and they return a whole lot on offense uh they return you know

coal keyline at quarterback or athletic playmaking quarterback who runs the ball

you know a dozen times a game will Fitzhugh Bell cow back got hurt about

mid-season last year and uh he was averaging you know 12 13 carries a game

just to kind of show you the way they kind of spread it on out and uh Jalen Spicer he's kind of their their uh their

home run guy and the way that he's able to get to the corner and a real

explosive Runner um you pair that with a handful of other guys who got carries last year a lot of

them and they just bring back a ton on offense I think they're kind of a scary offense that way because we've seen them

be very good in the past uh defense offensively last year they were solid

they weren't as good as they had been where they were like a top team uh defensively and they learned they you

know they lose Cade Pew and and Patrick Healy two of their top Defenders from a year ago but uh basically if you take a

look at their defense they still go ahead and bring back a good portion of that group and I really think that uh

this is a stock up type team and I I'd be real surprised if they don't find their way in the playoffs


coming in at number 14 Ashland they are 10 and 2 or they were 10 and 2 and they

were the champions of the GMAC yeah and Whit just talked about a stock up team and uh this is a team uh Brandon

that I'm not going to say they're stocked down but boy they got a lot of question marks coming into 2023 uh you

know starting at the top of the program you know uh uh lee Owens retiring after 19 Seasons at the helm so first year

head coach Doug Geiser is going to uh gotta take over things now he does have the luxury of leading rusher Larry

Martin coming back and Giovanni Washington was a 1200 yard back from 2019 who's just been struggling with

injuries the last couple of years he's going to have that one-two punch in the backfield uh so they should be able to run the ball okay but in addition to

changes at the Helm of the program in total you lose uh Austin Brenner who was a four-year starter at quarterback uh

and was a huge source of stability for the program in total uh and then uh you lose Michael Ayers who was an elite 100

linebacker for us last year um and so your your two key players one on each side of the ball being gone is

really going to be tough to overcome um and you know they actually felt a

little bit sluggish going into the playoffs last year uh finishing 10-1 on the season but then they got a great

first round win over Notre Dame uh and they kind of proved a lot I was wrong I think most of us picked maybe against

them uh in our in our picks last year um but boy when you look at what they face

in the first five weeks of the season this year we're gonna know a lot about whether or not these guys are stock up or stocked down real quick so they open

at iup they host Ferris and then they've got uh GMAT games against Hillsdale

Tiffin and Ohio Dominican and so four of those five teams had winning records last year the only one that didn't

Hillsdale is a trophy game and that's the team that handed them their only uh regular season loss last year so uh

we're gonna know a lot in the first half of the season of what Ashland's going to be able to make happen uh but you know sometimes change uh brings out the best

of the program so we're going to see real quick whether that happens here and there will be a lot of change at


Shepherd who it comes in at number 13. they were 13-2 last year and were a

semi-finalist in the playoffs yeah I guess you couldn't blame the Rams if they feel like they should be a little bit higher based on their recent track

record of success I mean they are the two-time defending Regional Champions uh but boy they just lost so many impact

players that that really helped carry them to those Regional titles over the last couple years uh they had I think

six First Team all-americans Elite 100 kind of players they got four of them that are trying to to battle it out for

NFL rosters right now I mean Tyson beijing's actually pushing to be the uh the backup to Justin fields for the

Chicago Bears and things are looking really really good for him so just so much experience and and one of the

things that we we tend to overlook with losing players like that is the leadership uh just a lot of leadership

that leaves the locker room but um I have a lot of play a lot of faith in the Rams program um they're not new to being good uh

they've been an elite caliber program for a long time so I think they will be good I think 13 is about where they

should be um they do have some players coming back there's a little experience particularly on the defensive side of the ball and

really kind of the big variable the big question will be you know who steps in at quarterback they did bring in a

transfer his name is Seth Morgan I have some starting experience at Virginia Military Institute actually passed for

uh just just shy of 5 000 yards in his career at VMI so he is an experienced player I think he's going to integrate

very well into that Shepard offense but still just a lot of a lot of newness uh

some unknowns in that Rams uh locker room so um we'll we'll see what they can be but I think 13 is about right where

they belong as we start the season foreign fellow psac opponent iup is ranked at


number 12. they are were 10 and 2 last year they were the champions of the psac

yeah I'm really curious to see what they come out with this year to start the season Brandon um they won the psac

championship game over Shepherd which was a phenomenal performance for them but around that the end of the season

wasn't especially strong for them they had a puzzling loss to uh to Gannon they

got by the playoff game against Ashland but just didn't play very well that day that definitely could have lost that

game uh and then we're really blown out by Shepard um in the in the third round of the playoffs so I think there's a lot

to prove for this iup team they did lose some key players they actually did very well in the transfer portal uh brought

in some offensive linemen that have starting experience to backfill a couple of spots added to their wide receiver

depth which I really like Hilton Ridley as uh as somebody who emerges as their go-to guy kind of replacing the role

that Dwayne Brown was in I think he's an exceptional player and they really kind of won the uh the D2 transfer

sweepstakes they got karst Hunter the highly coveted transfer quarterback from Colorado Mesa he was really kind of the

best best division two to division two transfer quarterback that was kind of on the market last year we were watching

him with great interest to see where he was going to wind up and he landed at iup which I think is a very good fit for

him I think he's really going to like the offense that they run there I think he's going to fit him with their culture very

well so if they can work out a few spots that they're missing on defense I think they're going to be a good team they

have a lot of size a lot of size our friend Matt Berglund who writes free for the Indiana Gazette wrote an article

last week about the size that they have at the offensive and defensive lines so you know that doesn't necessarily equate

to to having a great unit but there's uh there's a framework there for IEP to be very good again this year

chuck with with iup adding car stunner who obviously you you just spoke about there he seems like he'll be a

plug-and-play type of guy there for iup he's a physical player too

um do you think that with cars there and then maybe with some of the changes that are going on with some of the other top

psac teams is that getting some of what has iup kind of at the top of the list for us yeah I think so you know iup

historically has has done very well bringing in transfer quarterbacks that's that's just kind of their model they've

had a lot of success in doing that and I think karst Hunter is really going to hit the ground running with them and

he's got a good head on his shoulders we've seen what he can do on the field but he's also got a really good head on his shoulders and he wanted to go to a

program that has a potential to win he wanted to go to a program that has a history of success has a proven track

record and and a place where Athletics are really embraced in a place where Athletics really kind of you bring up

the whole profile of a campus so I think he's a great fit there and and yeah absolutely what I think he's a big part

of why iup is is looked at as the favorite in the psac


at number 11. Ouachita Baptist they were 11-1 last year and they finished first in the GAC

yeah Brandon and they had a fantastic season uh 11-0 undefeated outright Champs in the in the GAC and I think

they were a couple games clear just about everybody uh but boy it's hard to uh forget the the loss that they took at

the hands of Northwest Missouri State on their home field uh uh in Arkadelphia

um in that first round of the playoffs I mean that was that was tough tough to watch so uh they definitely have uh I

think a lot of work cut out for them in terms of being able to make a Deep Run uh in the playoffs this year and

obviously we've talked about Harding at 15. uh that's definitely somebody that they've got circled on their calendar in

week seven um you know they did lose TJ Cole uh their all-time leading rusher which obviously it's hard to replace that kind

of production but Kendall Givens was uh a really strong number two so we'll see how well he handles stepping in to uh

take over the load uh at the tailback position Riley harms to Connor Flanagan that Duos back so there should be plenty

of stability in the passing offense for wash it off but you know like we talked about I think the the physicality and

maybe some question marks on defense uh are really going to be tough uh to overcome now with that said I think they

got 10 starters coming back on defense so maybe that that experience will help them kind of shore up some of the the

holes that they that they showed last year uh towards the end of the season like I say they did have a couple of tough uh tough outs against East Central

and they kind of really got away with one in the battle of the Ravine against Henderson State in that overtime game so

uh you know there's there's a there's a lot coming back for Ouachita but boy I think they still feel like that the bad

taste in the mouth of how the season ended is really going to have to be their fire as they as they get the season started

all right very good before we reveal the top 10 I'd like to

Boss Pizza Chicken

take a moment to welcome boss's pizza and chicken as a sponsor of inside D2

football they are a company based in Sioux Falls and they have made a commitment to support our efforts to

cover and promote uh division two Athletics so boss has uh multiple

locations including restaurants directly in D2 markets uh they're in Sioux Falls

Rapid City the Fargo Moorhead area as well as Des Moines

you know what what Brandon what you did mention there was is that the owner

operator of a boss's Pizza Jeremy seafelt he and I are old buddies and uh heck even coached a little bit of legal

Little League Baseball together um but you know here's the thing is that not only do they have good you know

really good pizza and and chicken um and and now you're making me hungry by showing all this stuff on the graphic

but um you know and I know that's surprising that you guys would would that I'm getting hungry in the middle of

the show but um you know with bosses they they also support uh University of

Sioux Falls and Augustana both here in town um they're open late uh for for kids on

college campuses open till like 4 a.m so I mean Brandon I know you're a late night eater so that would be right up

your alley and uh and you know if you take a look they

they kind of specialize in other different locations and trying to go ahead and stream local games and things

like that and leave this leave this slide up for a minute Brandon because I want to come back to this but okay um

with them they're basically trying to get some more locations uh and a lot of

them frankly in the you know in the midwestern part of where we get a lot of coverage in the MIAA Northern sun and uh

guys we're basically looking to have a kind of an effort to go ahead and you know have them uh pair with us and uh

yeah you know this this graphic here that's that's on the display these are two professional eaters that I have a 28

inch pizza in front of them called The Boss Hog and they have a Boss Hog challenge at boss's pizza and chicken

and our fearless leader along with myself are going to take this on

at the end of September when USF and Augustana play their rivalry game and

maybe we'll even have some video for this for the show just a little bit of a you know talk about a little bit but

only five percent of those who try this challenge are able to eat the whole thing so we're hoping that uh between

Brandon and I we can you know make this happen but uh we're really glad to have

bosses uh along with us as our sponsor they're they're somehow A fitting sponsor I haven't really arrived at how

but they are for sure just look at us and uh one other thing to mention uh

they are looking to expand to New Markets as Witt said uh I in their

footprint I'm thinking Mi double A but I don't know for sure but if you are an entrepreneur and have interest in

opening a restaurant in your town visit their website it's just boss pizza and if you look in the upper right there's a franchise e-link and uh

uh whether you go there and eat or whether you decide to become a

franchisee we'd appreciate if you'd mentioned that you heard about them from us you know uh we're trying to help them

out as you know because they're helping out us out and we wanted to know that we

care about them and that uh we're working hard and and we obviously wouldn't promote a product that we

didn't believe in so you can obviously trust us on that one so maybe in a future week I'll do like a live eat

during the show I've seen some other you know small College shows they're big on that and so we we may maybe on something

we'll get into that looks like your appetizer Pizza went I I have faith in you guys I think you can do it I'm glad

you guys are behind me so in any case this is a what their website looks like and go to the upper

right and you can fill out the franchisee information if you are so inclined to do so all right enough food

let's get back to the countdown everybody coming in at number 10 Bemidji State the Beavers Were Ten and three

last year finished first in the northern Sun oh now I gotta talk about a football team I was looking at uh let pizza again

there I'm sorry uh yeah but guys Bemidji uh essentially they're gonna bring back

uh nine guys on offense for starters nine guys on defense that are starters

they lose Brandon bolio you know a superstar wide out they had uh but

they're gonna go ahead and have plenty of bodies that are ready to go ahead and kind of you know take up any of the

slack uh they bring Ali Mohammed a great running back uh from Minot State a

thousand yard rusher at Minot State not easy to be a thousand yard rush or Minot State in the last few years and uh he's

he's gonna go ahead and take over for Jalen Frye who departs and is heading out to South Dakota mines

and uh you know Brandon ald has been pretty Dynamic for them uh still probably throws more picks than uh I

would like but you know at the same time he also throws for a whole heck of a lot of yards and they have a defense that

made really nice improvements uh year to year uh to where the you know where they're bringing back

um basically they're losing two d-linemen and the rest of the tacklers are coming back so uh if I'm Bemidji

State I'm feeling pretty good about what they got heading into the season is this going to be the best team

they've ever had I think there's a real chance for that Brandon it seems like it's things are

kind of all building in that direction so many of the guys from this Core group I mean they're a very physical Northern

football team and they're they're really starting to kind of move in that direction the challenge I think they

have in the northern sun is that top group of teams has gotten pretty tough

all the way about one through eight um and it's hard to escape there without being you know without getting a few

losses and they would be real tough if they were having a bunch of home games come playoffs because I don't know how

many people are lying up to go to Bemidji that's that's further north than Duluth so so usually they have skates on

when they're yeah all right uh let's uh let's move on then

folks number nine Delta State the Statesmen were 11-2 last

Delta State

year they were first place in the GSC yeah Delta State last year uh surprised

I think a lot of people claiming that the division title um they returned Patrick she Gog which

is huge for them he's a great dual threat quarterback for the Statesman um they did lose a couple guys on the

offense however they lost one of their top offensive linemen and two wide outs um and and so

they they typically um are not known as a defensive team but

they do return two of their top four tacklers um and that includes Marlin uh Windham who comes back he's got 82 stops

eight tackles for loss and again not typically known for their defense they were able to come up with some big stops and turnovers when they needed it last

year but um they're typically when you think of Delta State guys you're thinking about high-powered offense or

fast they're athletic um and and they you know they lost some guy's graduation they lost a couple guys

in the transfer portal um but they've also done a great job of recruiting the transfer report they've got a couple D1 drop backs and one of

the things that coach Cooley has always done really really well is he he does a good job in the Juco portal down there

in Mississippi and always always finds a way to reload so you know they lost a couple guys at graduation and transfer

portal I expect them to reload um and I think they're going to be a tough out in the in the uh in the Gulf

South and I think I'd look for them to maybe hope you know we'll see but repeat there in the Gulf South this year

Minnesota State Mankato

Minnesota state Mavericks were 10-3 last year they were in first or they finished first in the

northern Sun yeah uh you know what the the everyone when they look at Mankato right now the

question really is is Mankato back and uh I I would say much more yes than no

I'm not really ready to fully say yes the reason for that is they lose quite a

bit on the defensive side of the football to where they you know they lose their their top tackler uh then you

know uh and Peyton Conrad then Elijah McGee they're probably top defensive Playmakers gone uh to the XFL

um they've just got some other challenges and they're going to be young that way but they are you know bringing

back two guys uh on defense from our Elite 100 Jacob Dalton and then uh Trev

of all so I I mean at the same time they have some real stars returning too and

and raval is the kind of guy you just don't want to kick to in the Special Teams game either but um defensively

they also lose Jim glogowski who is coach was there uh you know kind of

Coach hoffner's right-hand man since 2016 and they've been down a lot of

Roads together and a lot of success uh defensive line coach Todd Taylor will take over

um and he'll call the defense now uh he was he was a defensive line coach under glow a year ago and uh offensively I

think that they they're going to be pretty strong uh me you've got Hayden Eckerman returning that quarterback who

is a dual dual threat guy um bigger fella as well they bring back

thousand yard rusher Shane or Shen Butler Lawson thousand yards 12 scores

uh they do lose uh the top three ball catches they had from a year ago and

they were pretty active in the port looking at some D1 transfers uh and and

I think they picked up a nice combination of speed and size there so it'll be interesting to see how that turns out but I would imagine that

they're going to play behind their offensive line pound the football be more running team early maybe a little

opportunistic in the passing game uh whereas they threw a little bit more last year and I'm just expecting you're

going to see a little more traditional style uh you know from the Mavs this time around

wait I wanted to ask you a little bit more about the defensive side of the football for Mankato because if you go

back to maybe about the 2010s around that timeline when this team really started become an elite program defense

was really their identity they had one of the the fiercest and most physical just nastiest defenses for quite a long

time and that hasn't really been the case for the last couple years so what do you see their identity looking like I

mean you you talked about some of the the player talent that they lost but also you mentioned that Jim globalski

has left the program to go be the head coach at Sioux Falls how do you see that really impacting what their identity is

and what they're going to look like defensively this year I I really feel that that's the number one thing that

they really need to address Chuck to try and be the Mankato team that everyone thinks of and the identity that you

alluded to um you know in the back half of last year we all recall how they kind of got

it going and it was like oh here they come and I mean they they almost I mean

they had mines 21-7 and they let them off the hook and uh if they win that

football game our playoffs are a whole lot different we don't know exactly how it turns out and uh so I think that they

were really trending in the right direction as the year continued um the fact that that coach Taylor was

Under The Learning Tree Of Glow I think is going to make a lot of this not huge changes for them but uh at the same time

you know when you when you're calling a defense and glow ahead a lot of experience with that uh certainly you

know there's a comfort and trust with that and uh Mankato is gonna they they start off chuck with with Sioux Falls

and Wayne right out of the gate so they're going to get tested in that regard too

all right moving on to number seven West Florida the Argos were 12-2 last

West Florida

year and they were a semi-finalist in the playoffs yeah guys there's a lot of questions

right now I think with West Florida um and a lot of a lot of things left to

prove for them going into this year obviously new coach Caleb Nobles uh new

offensive coordinator and a new defensive coordinator um and so I I think there's you know a lot

of change in leadership in that program right now I think they lost some guys the transfer Portal had some guys hop in

hop out but they're also able to get some guys in the transfer portal so again a little bit of an unknown

um just some quick notes on that um you know they they lost David Durden

and simpler and Hargrove Hargrove to to graduation last year they lost Zach Elam

starting center with the Coastal Carolina in the portal and then Walker one of those defensive linemen ended up

going to Kennesaw State um so a couple losses that they had when you when you look at returners on the

offensive side of the ball obviously you got Peewee Jared back you got Kaden Leggett back um to name a few and then on defense

you've got will Breeland and Willie Jordan um two of the The Tackle leaders on

defense um but then you've added John Giles coming from Virginia Union you've got KJ

Franklin from uh Nichols and uh Byron Puryear from College of DuPage and and

Jacob Dorne from Saginaw Valley so they've been able to get in that portal a little bit to replace some of their

needs and so there's a lot I think you have to see it play out this year um on

the field to really get a feel for what West Florida is going to look like a couple other miscellaneous notes though guys uh Nobles obviously he's a first

year head coach he played quarterback at Valdosta State and West Florida um and later was a quarterbacks coach

and OC at West Florida and spent the last two years at Clemson has a quality control coach offense is probably going

to look a lot a lot like what we saw with uh coach shinnick defensively

however caval Connor comes from Clemson he's going to go to that four-man front they've been a three-man front for a

long time they're going to go transition to that four-man front so a little bit of change we'll see on the defensive side of the ball uh they had a lot of

success with that at Clemson and I think you're going to see a little bit of that defense that they were able to have some success with at Clemson down there in

West Florida the schedule is going to favor the Argos early they have a home game against Kentucky Wesleyan they have

game against McKendree and then a rogue game at Florida a m before they start that the Gulf South Conference slate so

um you know there's they've got seven guys returning on offense five on defense and

a lot of question marks in mixed in there so I think a lot we have to see how it plays out guys for West Florida I

expect them to be dangerous on the offense how quickly can they pick it up on the defensive side of the ball because we know they're going to face

some high-powered offenses there in the Gulf so I I think there's a lot of potential I I wouldn't wouldn't be

surprised if we see him second third round the playoffs again this year I just think there's a little bit that has to be played out we will see it come

week three week four where where West Florida Stacks up Justin I I just want to note the the FCS

game here because we know West Florida has done some things against fcf's teams

in the past especially like with McNeese the last time yeah how big or potentially how big is a game

against FAMU another team that's virtually in the same

relatively the same area as as Pensacola and West Florida

yeah I think where it becomes really important for for West Florida isn't that recruiting in that recruiting

battle in that area you know I think with the new staff you know with Coach shinnick there you kind of knew what to

expect with a new staff and with with new leadership in the program I think

it's really important they go out there and they have a good showing you know I think it's not far-fetched to think that they're recruiting some of those same

guys in in vice versa so I think it's really important that they have a good showing I also think it's good you know

for the guys in the program and that's what we don't talk about very often but when you have new coaches a new

leadership new coordinators you you start to you may question it if things

get tough right but if you can go out there and you can compete and you can battle and you're competitive right off

the gate and don't really miss a step guys are going to buy in and that's when it really can start rolling they can get

dangerous so good question Ferg I think um you know I think it's a big game for them you know not not just because it's

an FCS game but because like you said those recruiting battles and that the geographical station

I I don't know if something happened two years ago really matters anymore or not but you know they they scrimmaged FAMU I

think before the 2021 season um and had that been a real game the uh

the belief was that uh West Florida was was probably the better football team um so I I think they can match up with

FAMU I mean their family is a good a good team uh but I think that West Florida can match up with them I I think

that they've already seen that they can that the talent level they have in the program can compete against an FCS so I

think it'll be a really interesting game moving on to number six Angelo State

Angelo State

they were 12-1 last year they were first in the Lone Star conference

welcome to the segment of push pull okay push is where we're going to talk about what has happened there's somebody

leaving and and pool is what actually stayed in the program so Angelo State

last year um 248 yards passing a game 181 yards rushing on the passing front

um they've got to replace Zach brockhorse who graduated uh been in the program for quite some time uh and the

backup who may be the starter this year um really didn't have a lot of reps so a

big question at quarterback at running back uh let's talk a little bit about

that you know uh they they have somebody coming back right there on the screen uh case on Phillips uh who uh had over a

thousand yards in offense between rushing and receiving um but they also lost uh Nate omoyebu uh

to uh as a transfer to Southeast Oklahoma uh it'll be interesting to also

see if they can create sort of a one-two punch uh with Alfred Greer still in the roster but you know has had to deal with

some injuries um and if so then I think that really helps with um you know probably easing in a new

starter at the quarterback position uh certainly doesn't hurt to have their leading wide receiver coming back and

Rasheen green as well so let's talk a little bit about defense because I think there's a little bit more losses here

um certainly uh returning uh Abby A Williams uh who is second uh on the team

tackles for losses but you know they they had some losses on the defensive line uh Trey Colbert uh who transferred

to Maryland uh and also uh linebackers who either transferred uh to the FCS

schools or they graduated so you know certainly some questions there uh the one thing I will mention is uh I I like

to look at special teams a little bit um just because I think it also can help break in um new offenses and and release some of

the pressures off of them so Kay Fuller um punter averaged 42 yards a punt uh

which is certainly you know top half of the uh of the division

um division two so I think that really helps um as well so area probably where they

need to improve is third down on 38 on third down is not not spectacular

um so that's just a little bit about Angelo certainly some challenges that they're going to have if they want to

repeat this year heard when I when I took a look at Angelo this year I when I was trying to

do my top 25 I found them to be a very challenging Squad that's kind of where I wanted to land them uh I don't know if

there's another team in the Lone Star who's a really available and ready to challenge them for that two spot or you

know in terms of two two battling one uh I think there's some a whole bunch of teams that are gonna be like a three in

there but um I was real concerned with some of the they don't just have losses

they have like all conference All-American type losses all right and

you know when I looked at that they bring back a whole lot of the secondary but you're going to be breaking in a new

quarterback and things like that for do you think there's a chance that maybe this is the year where somebody kind of

sneaks up and gets them and if if if that's somebody is uh you know is it

maybe a place you've been at school at before well um it it certainly

um they they do look a little vulnerable I think they also look vulnerable with the schedule

um you know they got to play West Alabama they also gotta play in mind for the fourth time in three seasons might

as well can start a rivalry cup at this point um but if you look at kind of what's happening in Lone Star

um you know Central Washington is always a bit of a threat uh West Texas has a news has a new coach now that's a proven

winner uh and so it'll be really interesting to see what they've done with that Squad

um Permian Basin certainly um threatening as well uh with with some injection of new Talent too so and then

you can't count out Midwestern State you know you always think that they're down and and they just find a way to kind of

surprise you a little bit so um they they look vulnerable but um you know I think that Angelo's still

going to be a really tough out because of the fact that they have um quite a bit of talent at coming back

in particular to to sort of keep teams sort of sort off balance one thing I will note about Angelo uh 33 minutes

um and turn and and time of possession and I think if they have that that running game to sort of help keep other

teams off the field off it may help them quite a bit so

all right very good number five Northwest Missouri they were 10-3 last

Northwest Missouri

year and finished second in the MIAA yeah the Bearcats kind of got into the the playoff bracket when we really

weren't sure if they were going to make it and extend their uh their long run of making the playoffs in consecutive Seasons but once they got in uh boy they

share proof to be a dangerous team now they did lose some Heavy Hitters on the defensive line and at the linebacker

positions but if there's one thing I do not worry about in division two football it's Northwest Missouri State having a

really strong defensive front I think they'll be fine there yeah they've got some bodies that they have to fill but I

I don't think that's going to be a problem area for them I think they'll be just fine the big question is what can they be

offensively they played two quarterbacks a lot over the last two seasons and that

was part by necessity they had some injury problems so they really had to go with two different guys neither one really played consistently

well enough to make them you know not give the other guys some reps but this

year Mike Owens he's going to be the guy so he's going to be the Undisputed leader they're going to need a lot out of him and I think their season really

could depend on on just how well he's able to play how well he's able to lead them he may not have that uh you know

that star standout running back that they had the last couple years so we'll see how they develop their depth at the

running back positions um what I do like is that they're very good at the offensive line they've got

four starters back it should be very strong you should have good size there so you know Northwest

Missouri is a team that can always reload no matter what they lose no matter what they bring back they're always going to reload they're always

going to be good on defense but you know it's been a while since we've really seen them push through and be the best

program they've been a top five they haven't been the best program for a few years now so you know do they have what

it takes to actually get back to a national champion caliber roster we know they're going to be good potentially uh

semi-finals type of program or or a round of eight but it is an extremely

difficult bracket to get through in that region so do they have the team that can beat Grand Valley can beat Ferris State

can beat Pittsburgh uh I don't know the answer to that question yet I think there's a enough question marks about

what their offensive identity will be that I don't know that they can be that team uh that said you know that still

puts you in in top five territory because they're going to be playing with uh with some of the best teams in the country just within that region

absolutely number four Colorado School of Mines they were 13-3 last year and were the

national Runners up you know when I did my Top 25 Poll I actually had mines a little bit lower

than this more closer to the the bottom half of the top ten and I think I might have undersold them a little bit

obviously the biggest thing is that they've got John matoka coming back our 2022 Harlan Hill winner one of the most

elite players one of the best leaders one of the best performers in the country uh just having that back is is a

massive asset they also have about four offensive lineman back now they did lose their Center who was kind of the

quarterback of that line uh you won the the award that's given to the best center in in the country last two years

so that is a big loss but to have four other starters back is is huge uh and

they've got Max McLeod back on the offensive side of the ball as well so I do think losing Mike Zieman is a bigger

uh a bigger challenge than it might seem when you have a guy like matoka you assume he's kind of the the leader of

that team the leader of that offense I think Mike zieman's leadership and his toughness and and just the things that

he was able to do to kind of put that team on his back I think that's a big a big thing to try to compensate for and

to overcome so I I think losing him is a very big deal I know that they were able

to bring in a transfer from uh from from FCS that they're very very excited about so we'll see what what he can do but

losing zeeman's a big deal but they're still going to have a very good looking roster the coaching change doesn't worry

me at all I think Pete Starbuck is is you know very well suited to take over the program uh probably could have taken

this job two years ago when uh when Greg Brandon retired so I'm not worried about the coaching change there at all I think

that they're in fine shape um so I think we're gonna we're gonna look for how well do they adjust on

defense to some losses and do they have uh do they have the players on the roster to uh to make up for losing Mike

Seaman but it's it's definitely a very good looking team

State gorillas they were 12-1 last year and they were the champions of the MIAA

Brandon when I look at the gorillas um I think of how they had Ferris stayed on the ropes uh in in the second round of

the playoffs where they they had a chance late there to steal that game and couldn't quite get it to happen but it

illustrates I think how close they were last season uh to being one of the top

teams in all of D2 uh pair that with the fact that they were an undefeated MIAA you know Champion

um you know they did experience a little bit turbulence though uh in the spring uh you know the top running back Caleb

Lewis thousand yard rusher 12 scores he ends up going to Tarleton State and then

Christian Carter uh 700 yard receiver uh ends up going to Memphis uh FBS Squad so

I mean that's huge it's too significant departures there um and when you take a look at the fact

that they do return still what I see is the top tight end in division two football uh Devin Garrison the 6-6

athletic Target uh who mood is a lot more like a whiteout when you watch them um I think he's the kind of guy who's

still going to give him a huge threat uh offensively along with Chad Dotson's a very capable quarterback uh wasn't

necessarily a prolific Pastor a year ago but a very efficient one through for over 220 yards a game 29 scores nine

picks and they return a lot of the offensive line that they had some some of their better players there along with

on defense they return what six MIAA you know uh all-conference players from a

season ago that was a very good defense and they're also dangerous in the return game so I I think they still have enough

Firepower I think they're still very hungry from where they got a year ago uh

to be to have for us to have them ahead of Northwest and uh in the top three here

all right number two Grand Valley Lakers they were 12-1 last

year and they were the champions of the gliac foreign yeah Brandon and so you know it's tough

to get to the somebody who's right number two and think that there's uh you know some question marks with what they

come into the season with but it's hard not to ignore the fact that uh there was a change at the helm in terms of the coaching staff uh you know Matt Mitchell

led to see led the program for 13 seasons and uh Scott Wooster is going to be in his first season at the helm uh

but you know like Chuck was talking about with mines I don't know that there's a an enormous amount to be concerned with here just when you look

at what they come uh the Lakers come back with in terms of personnel uh you know uh Kade Peterson uh you know first

team allgliac uh quarterback and was able to is going to come back for his senior season uh Avery Moore saw a lot

of time at quarterback last year and uh he's back as well they get the leading rusher Tariq Reed back was over a

thousand yards last year now they did lose uh their top two pass catchers to FBS schools via the portal so they're

gonna have a little bit of work to do uh uh replacing that production and losing

their wrestle offensive lineman and Quentin barrels not an easy thing to replace as well but I know the staff feels really good about who they've got

coming back yeah and I think helping with the stability wise for uh for Wooster in his first season is you know

he was able to hang on to both his OC and his DC so the way the Lakers have run things uh on both sides of the ball

doesn't appear to have any imminent changes coming and so when you look at all those stats all the talent that's

back on offense and then maybe even more importantly on defense you know when you got guys like Christian McCarroll and uh

Abe Swanson coming back uh you see 41 making a tackle there uh on that on that

video there it's it's hard not to feel good about what the Lakers are going to be able to do from a defense that you

know was one of the tops in the country last year giving up only 11 points a game so um you know top end of the country top

end of the gliac I mean certainly that's it's a spot that they earn based on what they did on the field last year and I think they're feeling pretty good about

their chances to be right back in the mix again when we get to uh November and December this year Tony I hate to put

you on the spot but if you were to pick one thing that the Lakers have to do

well or improve on in order to have the kind of season that they expect what would that be

you know that's an interesting question Brandon and I think one of the things that uh that I think we'll try that

we'll see and I think there's going to be an emphasis on it and I think it goes to where Scott wooster's uh experience

comes from is it is it's going to be the offensive line play so um you know prior to coming to Grand

Valley he was the offensive line coach uh at Wayne State uh and he was coaching

the offensive line at Grand Valley on Mitchell's staff before getting promoted to the head position so uh it'll be real

interesting to see you know how he balances uh you know running the program in its entirety and still trying to get

the type of growth and production out of that offensive front uh so again they were very good last year can they take a

step forward and continue to be uh really difficult to deal with uh both in terms of how they dictate Temple

throughout uh games but also how they close games out uh as as games get into late into the fourth quarter

all right and number one Ferris State Bulldogs they were 14-1

last year they were national champions for the second year in a row Yeah the more things uh change the more

they stay the same right Brad yeah so um you know obviously Ferris is has earned uh that

mantle that they've that they've been on here now for uh the last couple of years of coming into the season as as our odds

on favorite to win the title uh they've done it on the field the last two seasons um they bring back a whole host of

talent uh on both sides of the ball uh most notably in the quarterback room you

get Malik Mitchell back you get Carson gulker back who um you know led the team in rushing uh

and so with that uh one-two punch at the quarterback position and guys who can do lots of different things and make it

difficult for uh defenses to plan for them that's one of the things that I think Tony and nice uh likes to be able

to do is keep people guessing and not really know what it is that they're going to do uh when they have the ball

uh so you know when they run the ball uh with gulker yeah they like to be more of a quarterback first um you know they

they a little bit of question mark As to who's going to do a lot of the work at the running back position but they've

actually kind of done a lot of uh different types of things with getting wide receivers the ball they should show

a couple plays the Brady Rose getting the ball out of the backfield they did a lot of that with Marcus Taylor last year I'm sure they're going to miss him but

uh you know having guys like CJ Jefferson back and and picking up a a good wide receiver through the town or

through the transfer portal they're going to have plenty of speed and plenty of power uh on the offensive side of the

ball um I think on defense you know I mean it's tough to replace a guy like Caleb Murphy who's uh you know in Camp with

the Titans now and has a real good shot to make a name for himself in the NFL they lose their best linebacker through

the transfer portal to an FBS School uh they did have a couple of guys graduate on the back end of the defense but gosh

then you still look at who they got coming back you know uh you know Larry old Depot's back up front you know they

picked up a a first-team ogliac transfer uh uh and Victor Nelson from Saginaw

Valley so um you know nobody's feeling sorry for for Ferris in that regard with what they're going to bring back they're

still going to be really tough and really nasty up front and you know we've talked about it on the show here guys I mean that's one of the Hallmarks of of

playing winning football nationally in division two but certainly within super Region Three boy you've got to be really

good up front on both sides and I'm not seeing anything that's going to indicate that at there are there any chinks in

that armor for Ferris State heading into this year Tony I when I was looking at Ferris

State um you know I was doing it trying to trying to look into them and obviously it you know having a little trouble with

her we don't even have their roster up yet uh for this year but as I was going ahead and kind of taking a look at

things uh and you know I was able to follow the breadcrumbs enough watch them On Media day and so forth

um I started to get the feeling like maybe they're even stronger this year than they were a year ago they lose you

know Murphy who you know he he obviously he's like almost like the Aaron Donald of our level right just ridiculous

production for sure but then they bring in you know a star transfer from you

know Saginaw Valley and and so I start to look at all this and I'm looking at some of the other portal pickups and I'm

thinking myself is there a chance that maybe they end up being even a better Squad this year it's

absolutely a possibility and I mean the other thing you got to look at too is is one of their best players in Xavier Wade

hasn't really played much in the last year or two because he's been dinged up so right if he's back in his healthy

this year I mean again I mean that's if there's one thing that uh again we we talk about this every year but it Bears

repeating everybody sees all the points and all the yardage and the explosive plays and thinks that you know Ferris

throws the ball a lot they don't they are a run first outfit but that's part of where they get you is that they get

you so concerned about what they're doing in terms of having to defend a quarterback who can run the ball lots of motion lots of Veer Concepts lots of uh

you know difficulty in pinpointing where the ball is going to go and then every time you think you've got their run game

somewhat figured out they've got somebody who's lightning fast running in space who gets hit with a pass and then

it's a big play that you're that your back end got burned with so yeah I mean uh picking up that wide receiver

transfer from Indianapolis doesn't hurt him any but again I think getting your way back who's an emotional leader on

that team is going to be something that can't be overlooked for sure all right

all right well there you have it everybody uh the uh Ferris State Bulldogs were picked to repeat as

national champs I don't think that comes as a surprise to anybody uh Ferris State will open the 2023 season hosting

Mercyhurst on August 31st uh just a reminder to like this video subscribe to

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all right well we had some questions that came up during the course of the show as they always Do's questions and

comments let's go ahead and hit some of those uh I'm gonna show this one first and it's kind of the same thing Calvin

said Ashland may be ranked a little too high and Joe kind of said I wonder about Ashland

and I guess reputation goes some I agree with I agree with both those guys as I'm

sure you guys do that you know um that's a reputation pick I I can't think of a of a worse situation for a

new coach uh than to lose the players that he lost and then have the opening schedule that he has

oh yeah so all right uh let's look at this too uh Chuck you're muted by the way

Chuckles dropping wisdom I know yeah I just had all kinds of texts yeah no I just uh I've got to have myself muted uh

yeah it's just it's pre-season right it's week zero um no I I didn't rank Ashland um that's no disrespect to the program

but just with what they what they have to replace in the start of the season they have I also did kind of look at

that and thought you know if they could beat iup and represent well against Ferris then that's a real good reason for me to put him in the top 25 no no

yeah all right uh let's look at this one Slippery Rock should be a lot higher a

lot of returning starters um I don't think they should be a lot higher maybe a few spots uh I this is

one thing that has always not annoyed me but it's kind of like a pet peeve is when somebody says you left so and so

off of your Elite 100 team or so and so should be higher nobody ever says who

said they should replace so theoretically they're just complaining that why aren't these 25 teams ranked in

the top five and it's a lot harder when you have to do the whole thing I don't vote in the poll myself but as uh you

know with you you vote in the poll it's hard just to think that Slippery Rock should be seven and just find a way to

put it there you gotta gotta work backwards it doesn't work out that way tell us about your thought process when

you're putting together your poll yeah you know there's some times where I may say you know I may get done with my pole

Brandon and the last somebody will ask me okay who do you have at this spot and I'll say okay they are I have them as

seventh and they'll say well I don't know if they're a top ten team and I'll say well you didn't put together all the

pieces of the puzzle either right what you know what you once you have to start going one two three

sometimes who you have at seven is the best team left and you may not feel that

they're a top tennis team but sometimes that's just the way the poll is looking right at that moment and so there's so

many little things that go into that um I I think with the fact that for example in this case Slippery Rock

um the fact that they are have a new quarterback that they're going to have to break in um I think that's a a thing that a lot

of teams like are voters I should say don't have a lot of confidence in a squad when they have to do that

um now if they have somebody that that is coming in um like for example cars Hunter probably

you know gives them a little bit of a boost because I think we could probably make a case up there he's an upgrade for

them um that's not taking anything away from Mr Sexton that's just saying we're the first Hunter can can help them not only

in the passing game but also help supplement the running game because he's a horse so you know so I think there's

some thinking like that at least that's the way I go about it no I kind of thought that too and I wondered that

about IEP because I thought that was a big pickup but at the same time we also have to come to the realization that

we're probably a lot farther down the rabbit hole than most people are even people who vote in our poll to

understand the the that those things are happening in that Dynamic uh let's pick up another one

um same thing uh interesting that West Florida is ahead of Delta and kind of

the same kind of thought process didn't West Florida be uh Delta in the past last year what is

change that makes it a surprise that they're ranked higher in the preseason um

you know I I don't vote in the poll but I've got I have to say if I were voting

I would have probably put Delta ahead of West Florida even though West Florida won last year because of the question

marks surrounding the program losing players losing coaches uh and quite

frankly a young a a coach that may be a Hall of Fame

College Football Hall of K uh Hall of Fame coach one day but it is his first season as a young head coach I think

there are a lot of questions and I think that West Florida probably is too high and certainly I

would have had Delta ahead of West Florida does anybody disagree with that no that's exactly the right Brandon I I

actually had those two right next to each other in my poll from when I first started you know

swagging out what it might look like until I was done I had those two like right next to each other and I think I actually flip-flopped them multiple

times when I was going through iterations in my top 25 and when I finalized that I did have Delta State

ahead of West Florida because of Patrick shigog you know when you've got an asset

like that that you know and you trust at the most important position on the field that means a lot

um the stability in the coaching staff and you know just a little bit of not

quite knowing what the identity of West Florida is going to be this year I don't think people completely understand and

appreciate how much of a miracle worker Pete shinek is um so you don't just replace a man like

that now he left a really good roster behind there's there's infrastructure there

um but that's a big variable for me okay I would agree with all of that Chuck and I think just to kind of go back to some

of the things that Whit was talking about and I think just to talk about the poll in general and Brandon and I you and I've had this conversation

low so many times over the years you know Tony well but that's a great segue into where

I where I'm going with this we grew up with polls think about cracking open the newspaper because that's when you saw

the poll was on Monday mornings or Tuesday mornings when the AP and UPI polls would come out this predates the

coaches polls and you know you'd see teams that would be ranked in the top

ten and yeah and it'd be predominantly because they had you know let's say it's week eight right they're eight no but I

look I look at a team like you know maybe Duke put a good year together and they're ranked seven and Michigan is

ranked eight and I'm looking at that going man Big Ten ball is way more difficult than ACC ball why are they why

are they even ranked remotely close to each other because if they put those two teams on the field right now I know who I think gonna win and that's kind of how

I try to always when I vote I always try to think to myself okay if I got a question about where somebody should be

and they're around somebody else in the poll I always think to myself all right if those two teams get on the field who

do I think is going to win or more importantly what do I think what kind of a line do I think Vegas is going to put

on it and that to me is is one of the tie Breakers that I use and yet I'm still fighting the Battle of that's what

we grew up on right where those polls where the fact that somebody's 10-0

I I know damn well they can't beat a couple of the teams in the poll that are eight and two but they're still people

are going to still vote much higher because they don't have the two losses and and so that's part of what makes the

polls interesting and and and conversation starters and whatever else and it's not an exact science so you

know the fact that people are asking us questions about that is part of what the point of they are part of them is so

it's a good thing all right Calvin wants to know why no Newberry I

think that's an interesting question I think part of it's based upon reality and part of it is based upon perception

let me touch on the perception first uh they missed the playoffs last year uh

because they were just had to disqualify one game cause them to miss the playoffs all right so now they're not in the

playoffs and they're kind of out of Voters Minds I think that's the perception part the

reality is they lost some really good players and I don't know if they deserve to be in there even had the the

perception not be an issue for Newberry uh you know they were marginal right on

the edge anyway and and then then there's Mario Anderson they lost their whole offense yep okay okay they lost

the quarterback they lost Mario Anderson to South Carolina they lost their two best receivers uh and I think in an

alignment or two so I mean they lost most of their offense so they're gonna have a very different look and the last time they had some big turnover like

that they had three straight losing Seasons so you know I think there's just a lot to prove there very good all right

uh Bradley wants to know why can other levels play week zero but D2 can't

uh I know that Minnesota state and Northwest talked about a week zero game which would have gotten Nationwide

attention Chuck you want to address this one uh well first of all I think it's a great question and there is a lot of

movement in fact we heard a couple of con conference Commissioners talk about this topic in their media Day comments

which by the way thank you to conferences like the Gulf South the armac uh the gliac and uh the Lone Star

for actually having their Commissioners give some comments that they opened their media day um

let me interrupt that a fairness let me interrupt out of fairness Chuck uh the

MIAA commissioner did as well

yeah yeah there's a lot of support and a lot of movement for playing the 11 game

schedule in a 12-week period which currently we don't do that you can play

a maximum of 11 games but they have to fit within 11 week period so there's a lot of movement to extend that to 12

weeks um there's even some talk about pushing the championship game out a couple weeks

maybe even after Christmas after the new year so um there's movement to change that as

far as why they wouldn't with do you wanna do you want to tackle the why or do we just want to say the NCAA likes to

be well I mean I think there's a few you know the the idea that you know you would have to have the kids on campus

and there may be some extra money on that piece I think that's probably a big factor

um I I frankly I think the NCAA just kind of likes the way it's Compact and

neat the way it is right now and I just don't think that they're wanting to have and kind of entertain that additional

week because we really haven't heard anything good for feedback as to why you know you didn't see something like a

Mankato in Northwest uh play or you know I just I'm not real sure it offers

somebody that big of an advantage if they start earlier I mean as long as you put everybody on the same page where you

make that open I don't think it should be a problem I think it gives you a chance to oh here's a good idea grow

your level and make it something feeling a little bit more important have a bigger game out there it's almost like

they were afraid to do that in this case and that's kind of what I didn't like about it I just want to throw in that um

in addition to those conferences the SIC and the CIAA also wanted a wee zero game

that would have featured the past champions of those two leagues to face

off in week zero Benedict favorable stage so I mean to not have that week zero was kind of a blow for us as well

yep that would have been very interesting so all right uh let's get more pool stuff

uh no assumption wait you want to handle this one yeah I

was um I I saw that in the comments and I thought okay wizard some sense of

entitlement that they should be um you know they they were what 23rd I think in our final poll which which

means that they're in there but I mean let's be real Frank anything after 20 could be anywhere up to 30 I mean it's

very fluid at that point um I looked into assumption to be real honest

um I just didn't have them beating anybody that I had ahead so I mean when I take a

look at a Pueblo I had at 25. um line that up today I'll take Pueblo

um so you know um that's kind of what we're looking at there is do I haven't beaten 24

Davenport I don't so that's kind of the way I you know and Tony you alluded to this before if if I

don't have if the team's at 26 through 30 which I think assumption New Haven I think I'd have both of them right in

that mix to be perfectly honest but I just don't have them beaten 24 and 25 that I have at the end of the line

yeah I totally agree with that and to that same token I mean I look at a

Saginaw Valley State who you know maybe lost a few a few guys but they've got Jairus Grissom uh back at quarterback

who's a heck of a playmaker they went eight and three last year I I take them over assumption right now too and

they're not they're not in the poll either so it's it's I think once you get past 20 I think you kind of got it right

where all bets are kind of off at that point sure all right we will take uh

four more questions uh wit let's come back to you uh do you think the nsic is undervalued

in this year's poll what nsic teams could be ranked by the end of the season that were I guess that

Matt's wondering that we're not ranked at the beginning yeah when I when I saw the beginning of this question I said and it says n NCIS

I thought we were talking about television show there for a moment but um see what you know I could easily I love

Mark Harmon I get easily distracted with food earlier but um so you know as we

look at this um Wayne State is the one I think of right off the top yeah you know

they were a squad that was uh had beaten Mankato last year um then lost to him in the playoffs and

I you know Brandon as you mentioned I think what happens in the playoffs can be very defining for if teams land in

the top 25 or not and uh the fact that they didn't show great there I I think

is probably leading into some of that um you know I'll talk more about the northern sun in a few days on on my own

deal but I really think there's a whole bunch of teams in the northern Sun that are probably in that 25 to 40 50 mix

with teams like Duluth and teams like the Winona State maybe even Augustana

and I think they're gonna meet up on each other again this year and I think that's a risk the northern sun has is

the more you meet up on each other less you're going to see yourself ranked too okay uh free poll voters uh I'm gonna adjust

this question a little bit how much does the preseason poll influence polls once the season has started let me ask that

in a different way because I don't believe it does once the season started how much do the conference preseason

polls affect your poll voting what do you want to start with that you

want me to go first or Tony they don't impact me just about any to be honest I

already have a draft up yeah I don't um I I don't put any Credence in the the

preseason coaches polls with with some exceptions you know you'll sometimes see coaches put some confidence behind a

program that maybe didn't have a great season the year before uh Benedict a year ago comes to mind I think they were

a preseason number two and they were five and five the year before so that that told me something that I didn't previously know that the coaches liked

that program but those occurrences are pretty rare I I don't look at those very much I would agree every coach I've ever

talked to says that the preseason conference polls are essentially a rehash of what actually happened the

year before so unless there's some sort of massive shift where you know everybody in the program left and you

know they're going to drop off by three or four games they pretty much are going to land where they where they did in the

actual standings from the season before so um you know it's it's really for me as a

voter it takes I'm more looking at all right where did we vote them last year what do I know about changes that they underwent and that's where I start going

into the season yeah the conference the conference Media or coaches polls I I most of the time I I'll look at them but

they don't impact where I vote okay hey Brent Brenda when I when I look at you know when I saw like the afca

poll will come out and I saw like Millersville was getting votes and you know Wayne State of Michigan and you

know Winston-Salem those that didn't influence me to pick them as well was

that was that a shot at you for you didn't you didn't throw some votes at Morehouse what let's just say there was some

eye-popping names in the bottom there yeah that had losing campaigns coming into this year

that made me wonder a little bit answer this one uh

this year the Mec teams are just going to do without a game I know a couple have tried to schedule I don't know if

they've had success yet but that's simply a bad situation and they're going to be with without an opponent I know

one team was able to get posts for homecoming uh so they didn't lose their homecoming game uh and I can't remember

who was supposed who was AB supposed to play the first week do you remember that track yeah California yeah okay and they

were trying to get a game uh but otherwise they're just gonna have to uh do without our last question for the

night because it's a more fun question um what team deserves to be ranked that

isn't hmm

[Music] I mean I could think of a couple to probably just throw out there as a

starter so you've got you know Truman you've got uh State Fort Valley State

are a couple that come to mind that you know in addition to assumption

um that could be you know possible Fringe top 25. I agree I I had Notre Dame in um uh they

did lose crisprim who was their quarterback for like nine years or something like that so that's that's a

big loss they do have some other big talent coming back and I I think the schedule sets up really nicely for them

it won't surprise me if they're you know a 506-0 team you know by mid-season and we have in the poll

um Truman State Fergie mentioned them I actually had them in at 25. I think that they've got a lot coming back I think

that they can challenge UND in the in the glvc um so do they deserve to be ranked am I

mad that they're not no but those are uh those are two teams that I put some confidence in

did you have an opinion on this wit are we good to go you know I I don't want to be too much

of a homer Wayne State as the first one that comes to mind in that group Chuck just took a whole bunch off my Hit List

yeah um yeah so it makes sense all right very good

all right so uh next week again uh we don't have any games this week but next

Thursday not this Thursday but next Thursday will open up the 2023 season

we're still gonna have a show next week uh what we're going to do in this show every one of us will give our picks for

the conference champion in every conference we'll see how those turn out we'll preview the week one games

and we will also debate whether you all want to or not

which conference is the best and why we will talk about that so I know Tony

cannot wait for that conversation no interest [Laughter]

and we will see you next week [Music]

thank you

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