/seasons/2014/contrib/20140807vcv2n4

Franklin Football Tapped Favorite in 2014 HCAC Coaches’ Preseason Poll

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Franklin, Ind. - The nationally ranked Franklin College football team has been selected by coaches as the preseason favorite to capture the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference (HCAC) championship this fall. Franklin received seven of nine first-place votes.

The Grizzlies, winners of four consecutive league titles, are ranked in the D3football.com preseason Top 25 poll and were selected No. 12 in the NCAA Division III Lindy's Sports preseason poll. The program has advanced to the second round of the Division III playoffs in each of the past three seasons.

"Our players and coaches realize that this is a honor with no guarantees of regular-season success. Championships come with a lot of hard work, leadership, teamwork, and good play on the field," said Head Football Coach Mike Leonard, who is entering his 12th season leading Franklin. "This preseason ranking means that we're going to get our opponents' best effort every game. We are anxious to see if we're up to the challenge."

The Grizzlies have some talented returning players to meet the challenge. Junior offensive lineman Austin Carlton (Evansville, Ind./F.J. Reitz) has been named a preseason All-American by Lindy's Sports and D3football.com. He earned first-team All-North Region honors by D3football.com and was a first-team All-HCAC selection in 2013.

Carlton is among nine returning offensive starters. Others are senior running back Joey Pasquale (Noblesville, Ind./Noblesville), and senior wing backs Zach Cole (Middletown, Ind./Shenandoah) and Jonny Hession (Speedway, Ind./Speedway). Senior tight end Dylan Jenney (Floyd Knobs, Ind./Floyd Central) rounds out the returning pass catchers.

The defensive is anchored by multiple-year starters junior lineman Nate Bryan (Greencastle, Ind./North Putnam) and senior defensive back Jameson Brock (Noblesville, Ind./Noblesville) anchor a unit as multiple-year starters.

Franklin opens the season on September 6 at Illinois Wesleyan University in Bloomington, Illinois, starting at 2 p.m. The team's home opener is set for September 13 against defending national champion the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, at 1:30 p.m.

2014 Heartland Conference Football Coaches Preseason Poll

School (First place votes) Points
Franklin College (7) 79
College of Mount St. Joseph (2) 65
Hanover College 50
Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology 48
Defiance College 48
Bluffton University 43
Manchester University 34
Earlham College 26
Anderson University 12
Nov. 18: All times Eastern
Final
Husson 23, at Springfield 21
Video Video Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at Berry 34, Huntingdon 20
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Final
at Delaware Valley 35, Western New England 0
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Final
at Brockport 66, Plymouth State 0
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Final
Frostburg State 35, at Wittenberg 7
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Final
at Mount Union 21, Washington and Lee 0
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Final
at Wesley 45, RPI 27
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Final
at Washington and Jefferson 31, Johns Hopkins 28
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Final
at Trine 63, Monmouth 24
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Final
at Mary Hardin-Baylor 50, Chapman 6
Video Box Score Recap
Final
Case Western Reserve 28, at Illinois Wesleyan 0
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Final
at UW-Oshkosh 63, Lakeland 0
Video Recap Photos Box Score
Final
at St. Thomas 47, Eureka 8
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Final - OT
at Wartburg 35, Franklin 34
Video Preview Box Score Live stats Photos
Final
at North Central (Ill.) 17, St. John's 7
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at Linfield 27, Hardin-Simmons 13
Box Score Photos
Nov. 25: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Wesley at Brockport
12:00 PM
Case Western Reserve at Mount Union
Video Preview Preview Live stats Audio Tickets
12:00 PM
Frostburg State at Washington and Jefferson
Video Live stats Audio
12:00 PM
Husson at Delaware Valley
Video Live stats
1:00 PM
Berry at St. Thomas
Video Live stats Live stats Audio Audio
1:00 PM
North Central (Ill.) at UW-Oshkosh
Video Live stats Live stats Audio
1:00 PM
Linfield at Mary Hardin-Baylor
1:00 PM
Trine at Wartburg
Video Live stats
Nov. 18: All times Eastern
Final
Muhlenberg 32, at Carnegie Mellon 6
@ Newark, Del.
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Final
at Franklin and Marshall 21, Widener 7
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Final
Susquehanna 28, at Albright 9
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Final
at Berry 34, Huntingdon 20
Video Video Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at Brockport 66, Plymouth State 0
Video Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at Mount Union 21, Washington and Lee 0
Video Box Score Photos
Final
at Trine 63, Monmouth 24
Video Box Score Photos
Final
at Wesley 45, RPI 27
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at Washington and Jefferson 31, Johns Hopkins 28
Video Box Score Recap
Final
Frostburg State 35, at Wittenberg 7
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at Delaware Valley 35, Western New England 0
Video Box Score Recap
Final
Husson 23, at Springfield 21
Video Video Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at Framingham State 48, Curry 14
Video Box Score
Final
Cortland 35, at Union 28
Box Score Recap
Final
Case Western Reserve 28, at Illinois Wesleyan 0
Video Box Score Recap
Final - OT
at Wartburg 35, Franklin 34
Video Preview Box Score Live stats Photos
Final
at Mary Hardin-Baylor 50, Chapman 6
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at UW-Oshkosh 63, Lakeland 0
Video Box Score Recap Photos
Final
at North Central (Ill.) 17, St. John's 7
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at St. Thomas 47, Eureka 8
Video Video Box Score Recap Photos Photos
Final
at Linfield 27, Hardin-Simmons 13
Box Score Photos
Final
at Ithaca 27, Salisbury 17
@ Newark, Del.
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at WPI 17, SUNY-Maritime 3
Box Score Recap
Nov. 19: All times Eastern
Final
at Alfred 29, Stevenson 16
@ University of Delaware
Video Box Score Recap