Kansas City, Mo. – With its spring practice sessions well underway, the Saint Xavier University football team recently earned a No. 16 national ranking when the NAIA national office released the 2014 NAIA Football Coaches' Spring Top 25 Poll Monday. The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences and independents. The Cougars made the biggest improvement of any team ranked in the postseason poll released last December jumping up two spots from No. 18. SXU has been ranked in 76 consecutive polls, the fifth longest stretch of current NAIA football institutions. Fellow Mid-States Football Association (MSFA) Midwest League member Grand View University (Iowa) garnered the No. 1 spot in the spring poll after claiming the 2013 NAIA national championship and finishing a perfect 14-0.
"I think this is the lowest we have been rated in a spring poll in about five years, so we will use this as a motivating factor," said Saint Xavier University football coach Mike Feminis. "The reality of it is that spring polls are usually just an extension of how you did last season and for us, 7-4 is unacceptable. I fully expect us to be right back where we belong as one of the top NAIA teams in the country this fall."
SXU opens its 2014 campaign on the road on Saturday, September 6, in a MSFA crossover battle with Marian University (Ind.). The kickoff time for the season opener has yet to be announced.
2014 NAIA Football Coaches' Spring Top 25 Poll (April 14)
|RANK||LAST TIME*||SCHOOL (1ST PLACE VOTES)||2013 RECORD||TOTAL POINTS|
|1||1||Grand View (Iowa) (13)||14-0||288|
|6||6||Saint Francis (Ind.)||9-3||236|
|10||11||Rocky Mountain (Mont.)||9-4||183|
|T16||18||Saint Xavier (Ill.)||7-4||111|
|T16||16||St. Ambrose (Iowa)||7-4||111|
|18||19||Lindsey Wilson (Ky.)||8-3||100|
|20||21||St. Francis (Ill.)||7-4||65|
|21||20||Dakota Wesleyan (S.D.)||8-3||64|
|23||24||Peru State (Neb.)||7-4||33|
Others receiving votes: Eastern Oregon 25; Reinhardt (Ga.) 8; Siena Heights (Mich.) 7.
* Top 25 ranking from 2013 Postseason Top 25 on Dec. 23.