Football Team Picked for Second Place in NWC

SALEM — The Willamette University football team is picked second by Northwest Conference coaches in the annual 2004 pre-season poll released today.

The Linfield Wildcats are picked to win their fifth straight NWC title, claiming all six first place votes following their 11-1 season. The Wildcats advanced to the NCAA Division IIII quarterfinals last season and return 16 starters from last year.

Willamette, with five returning offensive starters and seven on the defensive side, is a clear second choice of NWC coaches.

Rounding out the NWC poll were Pacific Lutheran, Whitworth College, University of Puguet Sound and Lewis and Clark.

The Bearcats open their 2004 season at home in a night game against Western Oregon University on Saturday, September 4 at 7 p.m.