Defending Champion San Diego edges Dayton in PFL Preseason Coaches’ Poll

Tuesday, July 31, 2018
by Cody Bush, PFL Media Relations

ST. LOUIS – For the eighth consecutive year, the University of San Diego has been picked to win the Pioneer Football League regular-season race in a preseason vote of the league’s coaches.

San Diego, which has won regular-season title then advanced to the second round of the FCS Championship in back-to-back seasons, again received the coaches’ nod to win the 2018 PFL title. The Toreros were chosen just ahead of Dayton in polling that was dominated by the two teams. San Diego and Dayton combined to receive all available first-place votes (coaches could not vote for their own team).

The Toreros received a maximum nine first-place votes to finish with 81 points of the maximum 100 points possible. Dayton earned the other first-place vote and finished with 72 points.

Drake was picked to finish third with 58 points after receiving four second-place votes. Behind Drake, a group of four teams were tightly bunched in fourth through seventh place. In-state rivals Butler and Valparaiso were picked to finish tied for fourth with 48 points each. Jacksonville was closely behind in sixth place with 47 points while Marist got the coaches’ seventh-place nod at 44 points.

The remainder of the 10-team poll was completed by Morehead State (22 points), Stetson (19) and Davidson (11).  

The upcoming 2018 season marks the 26th year for the Pioneer Football League – the nation’s only non-scholarship, football-only NCAA Football Championship Subdivision conference. The league will feature 10 teams each playing an eight-game schedule to determine the league champion and recipient of the automatic bid to the NCAA FCS Championship.

The 2018 schedule gets underway Thursday, Aug. 30 when Morehead State travels to Eastern Kentucky for a nonconference tilt. The league’s other nine teams begin the schedule the following Saturday.  The PFL regular-season race gets underway in Week 4 when Marist travels to Stetson and Dayton hosts Davidson. A complete five-game PFL slate follows the next week.

Pioneer Football League
2018 Preseason Coaches’ Poll

Team Points
1. San Diego (9) 81
2. Dayton (1) 72
3. Drake 58
4. Butler 48
  Valparaiso 48
6. Jacksonville 47
7. Marist 44
8. Morehead State 22
9. Stetson 19
10. Davidson 11
  • First-place votes in parentheses.
  • Nine points awarded for a first-place vote, with one point less for each succeeding place. (Maximum score = 81)
  • Coaches were not allowed to vote for their own team.
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