August 6, 2014

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
Sep. 1: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Coast Guard at Anna Maria
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7:00 PM
Defiance at Baldwin Wallace
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7:00 PM
Washington and Lee at Johns Hopkins
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7:30 PM
Trine at Manchester
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8:00 PM
Belhaven at Millsaps
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Sep. 2: All times Eastern
6:00 PM
Mass-Dartmouth at Mount Ida
6:00 PM
Delaware Valley at Wesley
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7:00 PM
Muhlenberg at Wilkes
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7:00 PM
N.C. Wesleyan at Stevenson
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7:00 PM
Western New England at Springfield
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7:00 PM
Fitchburg State at Becker
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7:00 PM
Albright at Salisbury
7:00 PM
WPI at MIT
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7:00 PM
Salve Regina at Worcester State
7:00 PM
Bridgewater State at Curry
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7:00 PM
Morrisville State at St. Lawrence
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7:00 PM
Nichols at Westfield State
10:00 PM
Adrian at Pacific
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Sep. 3: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Endicott at Framingham State
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12:00 PM
Washington U. at Carnegie Mellon
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12:00 PM
Chicago at Case Western Reserve
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12:00 PM
Husson at Alfred
12:00 PM
SUNY-Maritime at Maine Maritime
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12:00 PM
Cortland at Heidelberg
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12:00 PM
Otterbein at Buffalo State
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Ursinus at Bethany
12:00 PM
Sewanee at Kenyon
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Alfred State at William Paterson
1:00 PM
King's at Moravian
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1:00 PM
Kean at Christopher Newport
1:00 PM
McDaniel at Catholic
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1:00 PM
Lebanon Valley at Franklin and Marshall
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Plymouth State at Castleton
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1:00 PM
RPI at Norwich
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Randolph-Macon at Dickinson
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Oberlin at Kalamazoo
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1:00 PM
Emory and Henry at Ferrum
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Wooster at Washington and Jefferson
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St. Vincent at Alma
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Concordia (Wis.) at Finlandia
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Olivet at St. John Fisher
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Rowan at Widener
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1:00 PM
Hobart at Brockport
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1:00 PM
Union at Ithaca
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1:00 PM
Susquehanna at Lycoming
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1:00 PM
Utica at Misericordia
1:00 PM
The Apprentice School at Methodist
1:00 PM
TCNJ at UW-Whitewater
1:30 PM
Wilmington at Bluffton
1:30 PM
Monmouth at Hope
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1:30 PM
Bridgewater at Gettysburg
1:30 PM
Muskingum at Waynesburg
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1:30 PM
Juniata at Grove City
2:00 PM
Wisconsin Lutheran at Trinity Int'l
2:00 PM
Lakeland at Carroll
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2:00 PM
UW-Stevens Point at St. Norbert
2:00 PM
Austin at Hendrix
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2:00 PM
Maranatha Baptist at Martin Luther
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2:00 PM
Millikin at Greenville
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Eureka at Knox
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MacMurray at Rockford
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Gustavus Adolphus at Westminster (Mo.)
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UW-La Crosse at Luther
2:00 PM
Beloit at Lake Forest
2:00 PM
Concordia-Moorhead at Jamestown
2:00 PM
Crown at Hamline
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2:00 PM
Carleton at Macalester
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2:00 PM
Bethel at Dubuque
2:00 PM
St. Scholastica at St. John's
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2:00 PM
St. Olaf at Grinnell
2:00 PM
Buena Vista at Mayville St.
2:00 PM
Simpson at UW-Stout
2:00 PM
Aurora at Carthage
2:00 PM
UW-River Falls at Coe
2:00 PM
Ripon at Concordia-Chicago
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2:00 PM
Elmhurst at Loras
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2:00 PM
Huntingdon at Louisiana College
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2:00 PM
North Central (Ill.) at Robert Morris-Chicago
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2:00 PM
Benedictine at Wheaton (Ill.)
2:00 PM
John Carroll at UW-Oshkosh
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2:30 PM
Southern Virginia at Earlham
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2:30 PM
Lawrence at Presentation
4:00 PM
McPherson at Nebraska Wesleyan
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4:00 PM
UW-Platteville at George Fox
4:00 PM
La Verne at Puget Sound
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4:00 PM
Central at Whitworth
5:00 PM
Hartwick at Western Connecticut
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6:00 PM
Wabash at Albion
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6:00 PM
Maryville (Tenn.) at Berry
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6:00 PM
Augustana at Mount St. Joseph
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6:00 PM
Thomas More at Franklin
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6:00 PM
Hampden-Sydney at Averett
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7:00 PM
Denison at Marietta
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7:00 PM
Hiram at Westminster (Pa.)
7:00 PM
Thiel at Allegheny
7:00 PM
Capital at Wittenberg
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7:00 PM
Shenandoah at Gallaudet
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7:00 PM
Illinois College at Rose-Hulman
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7:00 PM
Geneva at Frostburg State
7:00 PM
Greensboro at Guilford
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7:00 PM
LaGrange at Birmingham-Southern
7:00 PM
Hardin-Simmons at Southwestern
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7:00 PM
Anderson at North Park
7:00 PM
Ohio Wesleyan at Mary Hardin-Baylor
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7:00 PM
East Texas Baptist at Texas Lutheran
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7:10 PM
St. Thomas at UW-Eau Claire
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7:30 PM
Hanover at Centre
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8:00 PM
Willamette at Rhodes
8:00 PM
Cornell at Iowa Wesleyan
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8:00 PM
Augsburg at Northwestern (Minn.)
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8:00 PM
Southwestern Assemblies at Howard Payne
8:00 PM
Sul Ross State at UT-Permian Basin
8:30 PM
Redlands at Trinity (Texas)
Sep. 1: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Washington and Lee at Johns Hopkins
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Sep. 2: All times Eastern
6:00 PM
Delaware Valley at Wesley
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7:00 PM
Albright at Salisbury
Sep. 3: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Cortland at Heidelberg
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1:00 PM
TCNJ at UW-Whitewater
2:00 PM
North Central (Ill.) at Robert Morris-Chicago
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2:00 PM
John Carroll at UW-Oshkosh
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2:00 PM
Huntingdon at Louisiana College
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2:00 PM
St. Scholastica at St. John's
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2:00 PM
Benedictine at Wheaton (Ill.)
4:00 PM
UW-Platteville at George Fox
4:00 PM
Central at Whitworth
6:00 PM
Thomas More at Franklin
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6:00 PM
Wabash at Albion
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7:00 PM
East Texas Baptist at Texas Lutheran
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7:00 PM
Ohio Wesleyan at Mary Hardin-Baylor
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7:00 PM
Hardin-Simmons at Southwestern
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7:10 PM
St. Thomas at UW-Eau Claire
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