Willamette is #17 in AFCA Coaches Poll

UW-Whitewater Holds the #1 Ranking

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- The Willamette University football team is ranked #17 in this year's first NCAA Division III Coaches' Poll released by the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA). University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, 3-0, the defending Division III national champion, leads the poll with 32 of 40 first place votes and 992 points.

UW-Whitewater held a 29-point lead in the poll over Mount Union College, 2-0. Mount Union was #2 in the rankings and received eight first place votes to go with 963 points.

Wesley College (Del.) followed at #3 with a 3-0 record and 862 points. University of Mary Hardin-Baylor (Texas), 2-0, was #4 with 796 points, while University of St. Thomas (Minn.), 3-0, was listed at #5 with 788 points.

Wittenberg University (Ohio) was ranked #6 with a 3-0 record as well as 761 points. Central College (Iowa) took the #7 spot with a 3-0 mark and 641 points. Hardin-Simmons University (Texas), 3-0, was #8 with 620 points, with North Central College (Illinois), 2-0, at #9 on the strength of 559 points in the poll. Ohio Northern University was #10 with a 2-0 record and 517 points.

Willamette was the only West Coast team in the Top 25 of the Coaches' Poll. Linfield College, Pacific Lutheran University, California Lutheran University and University of Redlands were listed among others receiving votes.

After an open date this coming weekend, the Bearcats will take on Linfield in the Northwest Conference opener for both teams on Saturday, Oct. 2. Game time in McMinnville, Ore., is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. (PDT).

WU quarterback Brian Widing has completed 20 of 32 passes for 370 yards and four touchdowns.

WU quarterback Brian Widing has completed 20 of 32 passes for 370 yards and four touchdowns.