Football

 

Baldwin Wallace Football Team Picked Second in OAC Preseason Poll


John Snell

BEREA, OHIO -- The Baldwin Wallace University football team was picked to finish second by both the Ohio Athletic Conference Coaches and the Media at the Annual OAC Media Day Football Preview at the Doubletree Hotel by Hilton in Independence. BW is coming off of a very successful 8-2 record in 2011.

“We appreciate the confidence in our football program and in our student-athletes by both the OAC Coaches and Media who cover the OAC,” said 11th-year Yellow Jacket Head Coach John Snell, who enters the season with a 64-38 career mark. “Ultimately, we will be judged by how our student-athletes conduct themselves both in the classroom and perform on the football field.

“Our goals at BW never change,” said Snell. “Each year we set out to win championships.  Our first goal is to win the prestigious Ohio Athletic Conference title.  Our feeling is that if we can win the OAC title, we have what it takes to also win the NCAA Division III national title.  History bears out that fact.

“Last season, we had a solid season and made some excellent improvement on both sides of the football and on special teams,” continued Snell, who’s team is 15-5 during the past two seasons. “This season, we return a number of key student-athletes on offense who have the talent and ability to take us to the next level of success. With that said, we also lost some outstanding athletes to graduation off of our defense, and that’s a major concern coming into this season.”

Coaches Poll  Media Poll
Team (1st Place Votes)
Points Team (1st Place Votes) Points
1. Mount Union (9) 81 1. Mount Union (30)  309
2. BW (1) 66 2. BW (1) 250
Heidelberg
4. Ohio Northern
57
3. Heidelberg 236
5. Capital 42 4. Ohio Northern 234
6. John Carroll 41 5. John Carroll 172
7. Otterbein 38 6. Capital 148
8. Muskingum 28 7. Otterbein 143
8. Marietta 24 8. Muskingum 98
10. Wilmington 10 9. Marietta 84
10. Wilmington 31

The Yellow Jackets are ranked 19th in the d3football.com (www.d3football.com) Division III Preseason National poll.

Leading the way for the Yellow Jackets will be the return of 33 lettermen and 10 fulltime starters, including seven on offense, and both its placekicker and punter. In addition, the team returns two of the most explosive kick return specialists in Division III in junior speedsters and NCAA Division III track All-Americans Kevin Johnson (Maple Heights/ Cleveland St. Ignatius) and first-team All-OAC pick Josiah Holt (Elyria/ Grafton Midview). A total of 199 student-athletes are expected when preseason camp opens a week from today (August 15).

Offensively, the Yellow Jackets will be led by senior quarterbacks Ryan O'Rourke (Avon) and Andrew Dziak (Maple Heights/ Parma Padua), senior running backs Tim Miker (Parma) and first-team All-OAC choice Tyler Lohr (Kent/ Roosevelt), wide receivers Holt, senior Aaron Manders (Toledo/ Cardinal Stritch) and junior Gabe Adams (Hudson) and senior tackle Clay Wolf (Parma Heights/ Padua) and junior guard Jason Cook (Streetsboro).

Defensively, BW lost eight starters to graduation. It will be led by its three returning starters in senior All-OAC tackle Max Wagner (Mentor), junior tackle Addison Carbone (Hudson) and senior cornerback Brandon Russo (Olmsted Falls). In addition, senior defensive end Joe Fitch (Elyria), a starter in 2010, is back.

BW opens its season on September 8 versus Bluffton University on Family and Community Night in Berea. The Yellow Jackets open OAC play on Sept. 15 versus Cleveland cross-town rival John Carroll University in the battle for the Cuyahoga Gold Bowl trophy in University Heights at 6:00 p.m.  Both games will be televised by SportsTime Ohio (www.sportstimeohio.com).

FOR MORE BW Sports Information, please contact Sports Information Director Kevin Ruple by telephone at 440-826-2327 and e-mail at kruple@bw.edu. or Assistant SID Jeff Miller by phone at 440-826-2780 and email at jefmille@bw.edu Fans can access the latest BW athletics information at www.bw.edu/athletics and we invite you to join us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/bwyellowjackets and Twitter at http://twitter.com/bwathletics.

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