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Bastrop Daily Enterprise - Bastrop, LA
  • Southern, Alabama State head preseason poll

  • SWAC Media Days
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  • Grambling was picked to bring up the West Division cellar as the Southwestern Athletic Conference released its preseason poll and All-Conference team as part of Friday's Media Day festivities in Birmingham, Ala.
    Coming off of back-to-back 1-win seasons, the Tigers received a conference-low 31 points in the poll and were not represented on the All-Conference squad.
    Defending conference champion Southern was tabbed to win the West over Prairie View A&M in a close vote. Arkansas-Pine Bluff is the third-place pick with Texas Southern at No. 4.
    Alabama State got the nod over Alcorn State by two points in the SWAC East, followed by Jackson State, Mississippi Valley and Alabama A&M.
    Southern outlasted Jackson State 34-27 in last year’s conference championship game.
    UAPB quarterback Benjamin Anderson and Alabama State linebacker Kourtney Berry are the preseason Player of the Year picks.
    Anderson threw for 2,786 yards and 19 touchdowns last season as a junior. He was named first-team All-SWAC in 2012 after helping the Golden Lions to a 10-2 record and the conference championship.
    Berry, the 2013 SWAC Newcomer of the Year, was the conference's second-leading tackler as a redshirt freshman. He finished the season with 105 tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss and seven sacks.
    Alcorn leads the way with 10 preseason All-Conference picks, including seven first-team selections. Jackson State is next with nine, followed by Alabama State and Southern with seven each, Prairie View with five, Mississippi Valley and Texas Southern with four, UAPB with two and Alabama A&M with one. 
    EAST DIVISION
    1. Alabama State 93
    2. Alcorn State 91
    3. Jackson State 72
    4. Mississippi Valley 40
    5. Alabama A&M 34
    WEST DIVISION
    1. Southern 95
    2. Prairie View A&M 88
    3. UAPB 63
    4. Texas Southern 50
    5. Grambling 31

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