Lakeland Tabbed Preseason Favorite by IBC Coaches
Athletics - posted on 8/9/2005
The Lakeland College football team will open 2005 as the Illini-Badger Conference favorite as the Muskies were in the top spot of the IBC Preseason Coaches Poll, released Tuesday by the league. Lakeland secured six of the possible seven first-place votes (coaches in the eight-team league were not allowed to vote for their own team).
"It's an honor," said Lakeland third-year head coach Jim Zebrowski, whose team shared the league title with Aurora and Concordia (Wis.) last fall and returns its entire offensive and defensive lines and all its top rushers.
"You work hard to put yourself in a position to be in first," Zebrowski said. "It is only a preseason poll, so now we have to go out and prove it. We have a lot of kids returning and they have been working hard. It is nice to be earning the respect of other coaches in the conference and it shows that we are on the right track to being a successful program."
The IBC's three co-champions from the 2004 season were ranked in the top two positions in the preseason this year. Following Lakeland in the top spot, Aurora and Concordia (Wis.) finished in tie for second place. The complete IBC preseason poll is listed below. Numbers in parentheses represent the number of first place votes the team received.
1. Lakeland (6)
2. (tie) Aurora (1)
Concordia (Wis.) (1)
5. (tie) Eureka
8. Concordia (Ill.)
Lakeland opens the non-conference portion of its schedule on Sept. 3 at Taylor Field against Northwestern (Minn.), before back-to-back dates at nationally-ranked Carthage and home against UW-Whitewater. The Muskies open IBC play at home on Sept. 24 against Benedictine. Lakeland will play Concordia (Wis.) in Mequon on Oct. 15, while playing host to Aurora on Oct 29 in their second to last game of the season.
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