McNeese Football Picked to Finish Third in the Southland

McNeese 3rd SLC

LAKE CHARLES – A season after finishing 7-4 and with 62 players returning, including 16 starters, McNeese has been picked for a third place finish in both the Southland Conference coaches and sports information directors polls, released by the league office at the annual football media day event at L'auberge Casino and Resort on Wednesday.

"This is definitely an exciting time of the summer," said head coach Matt Viator who will be entering his eighth season at the helm.  "August is one of my most favorite times of the season.  I love August camp."

The Cowboys garnered 37 points from the coaches and 33 from the SIDs.  Sam Houston State, winners of the last two conference championships, has been picked to win its third straight followed by Central Arkansas in both polls.

Following McNeese in the coaches' poll is Stephen F. Austin, Southeastern Louisiana, Northwestern State, Lamar and Nicholls.  In the SID poll, SLU follows McNeese at No. 4, Stephen F. Austin fifth, Nicholls and Northwestern State tied for sixth and Lamar in eighth.

"We have a lot of talent coming into the season," said preseason first team all-conference offensive lineman Arinze Agada.  "Our offensive line should be pretty good.  I have a lot of faith in the guys we have as well as the younger guys."

Agada is joined on the first team by fellow lineman Antoine Everett as well as wide receiver Diontae Spencer.  On the defensive side, Cahee was named to the first  team all-conference squad along with cornerback Guy Morgan and linebacker Deonte Thompson.

"We're ready to get the season going," said Cahee.  "Everyone has worked extremely hard during the offseason.  And I don't mean just a few guys.  Everyone has been working hard."

McNeese will host thee conference games in 2013 – Sam Houston State on Oct. 19, Southeastern Louisiana on Nov. 2 and Northwestern State on Nov. 16.

The Cowboys report for fall camp on Aug. 6 and will open the season on Aug. 31 at South Florida.

2013 Southland Conference Football Preseason Polls Coaches' Poll

1.  Sam Houston State (6)     48

2.  Central Arkansas (1)       42

3.  McNeese                   37

4.  Stephen F. Austin (1)     32

5.  Southeastern La.          26

6.  Northwestern State        17

7.  Lamar               14

8.  Nicholls                  8

Sports Information Directors

1.  Sam Houston State (6)     48

2.  Central Arkansas (2)      44

3.  McNeese                   33

4.  Southeastern La.          30

5.  Stephen F. Austin         27

T6.  Nicholls                 18

T6.  Northwestern State       18

8.  Lamar               15