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August 7, 2012

Vikings pegged for fifth in CCIW

Coach Rob Cushman's Augustana football team has been tabbed for fifth place in the College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin in a pre-season poll of the league's coaches.

NAPERVILLE, Ill. - The College Conference of Illinois & Wisconsin football coaches have picked North Central as the favorite to win the league in 2012. The six-time defending champion Cardinals received 48 points and six first-place votes. Augustana, led by second-year head coach Rob Cushman, was pegged for fifth in the pre-season grid poll.

The Vikings finished 2-5 in the league a year ago, tying for fifth in the conference. This year's team, which will be playing its home games on a brand new FieldTurf surface installed at Ericson Field this summer, welcomes back 12 starters and 45 letter winners, but will have to replace record-setting quarterback David Lee. Cushman also welcomes five new assistant coaches to his staff for the 2012 season.

The order of this year's poll matched that of 2011, with Wheaton picked to finish second, receiving 43 points and two first-place votes. Illinois Wesleyan, with 36 points, held down the third spot. Elmhurst's 32 points put it fourth, followed by Augustana (21 points), Carthage (19), Millikin (18) and North Park (seven).

The Vikings open the 2012 season on Saturday, September 1, visiting Dubuque for a 6:00 p.m. contest. The team's home opener on its new playing surface will take place on Saturday, September 15 when Augustana hosts Loras in a 6:00 p.m. start.

2012 CCIW Pre-Season Football Coaches' Poll

School

Points

1st place votes

1. North Central

 48

 6

2. Wheaton

 43

 2

3. Illinois Wesleyan

 36

 

4. Elmhurst

 32

 

5. AUGUSTANA

 21

 

6. Carthage

 19

 

7. Millikin

 18

 

8. North Park

 7