C-N football factors prominently in preseason magazine prognostications

Eien Jacob timed this interception perfectly in the Eagles' final regular season home game against Newberry.
Eien Jacob timed this interception perfectly in the Eagles' final regular season home game against Newberry.
JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. – Carson-Newman football has received some love from two preseason publications.  The Eagles are ranked 18th in The Sporting News' preseason poll and 14th in Lindys.

In addition, Carson-Newman defensive back EJ Jacob has been named a preseason first team All-American by Lindys. 

Jacob was second in the SAC with his five picks last year.  With his two interceptions against Newberry, Jacob became the first Eagle with a multi-pick game since Oliver Davis had a pair against Tusculum in 2010. 

He finished the regular season with a career best seven-tackle day against Wingate.  Jacob needed two more picks to break into the top 10 for most interceptions in a single season at C-N.

The Eagles must find ways to replace All-American tackle Alex Taylor and all-region guard Lucas Mathis on the right side of the line.  However, they do return all-region performer Robbie Ignagni up front, as well as Dan Gallman, Derek Evans and Tyler Scott.  Those three linemen all have significant starting experience. 

Both starting running backs are gone in All-American Brandon Baker and all-conference performer Tyron Douglas – the duo combined for 2,051 yards last year and 6,488 yards in their career.  However, Andy Hibbett will move into the role of full-time starter after gaining 837 yards in his junior season with nine touchdowns.  Hibbett has 1,817 career rushing yards and needs 634 to break into the top 15 on the all-time rushing list at C-N in his senior season. 

At quarterback, the Eagles bring back De'Andre Thomas.  In his sophomore year, Thomas became the first Eagle QB with 20 rushing touchdowns in a single season and the fourth player overall to do so. He also set Sparks-era passing records for completions and completion percentage, as well as the single game passing efficiency record.  The Eagles only lose Luther Walker from the receiving corps, Thomas' top two targets – TraShaun Ward and Anthony Eubanks both return. 

Defensively, the Eagles must replace Anthony Baskin in the secondary, who signed in the Indianapolis Colts in the offseason.  However, three other starters are back in the secondary (Jacob, Sean Rawson and Dante Thomas), as well as 2012 starter Xavier Stevens

C-N's linebacking corps was hit hardest by graduation; four senior starters leave the program including All-American Jaycob Coleman and 260-career tackle LB Jonathan Sites

On the defensive line, tackles Jamar Neal and Michael Surgbally are gone, but all-region defensive end Javaris Neal is back, as well as William Alderman

The Eagles open the season Sept. 4  at 7 p.m. against Edinboro. 

Sporting News Preseason Top 25

  1. Northwest Missouri State
  2. Grand Valley State
    3. CSU-Pueblo
    4. Minn. State Mankato
    5. Lenoir-Rhyne
    6. West Chester
    7. North Alabama
    8. Minnesota-Duluth
    9. West Texas A&M
    10. Henderson State
    11. Shepherd
    12. Winston-Salem State
    13. Ohio Dominican
    14. Pittsburg State
    15. ST. Cloud State
    16. Indianapolis
    17. Bloomsburg
    19. Delta State
    20. American International
    21. Tuskegee
    22. Emporia State
    23. Newberry
    24. East Stroudsburg
    25. Azusa Pacific

    QB Kevin Rodgers, Henderson St
    RB Tyler Tonderum, SWMSU
    RB Daiquone Ford, Findlay
    OL Cole Manhart, Kearney
    OL Matthew Reese, Tuskegee
    OL Joe Ray, L-R
    OL Cory Tucker, Slippery Rock
    OL Garrison Ushery, West Georgia
    TE Jamie Potts, GVSU
    WR Jere Brown, Shippensburg
    WR Trevor Harman, Shippensburg

    DL Matt Longacre, NWMSU
    DL Darius Allen, Pueblo
    DL Charlie Tuaau, Commerce
    DL Grant Singer, Mary
    LB Ronell Williams, West Chester
    LB Isaiah Fleming, Cheyney
    LB D.J. Gnader, NWMSU
    DB John Strickland, Indy
    DB Tyler Thornton, Azusa Pacific
    DB Colin Kimball, Mercyhurst
    DB Harold Jones-Quartey

    K Brent Wahle, Ohio Dominican
    P Patrick Carney, Highlands


TOP 25
1. North West Missouri State
2. St. Cloud State
3. Lenoir-Rhyne
4. Grand Valley State
5. Henderson State
6. Pittsburg State
7. Minnesota-Duluth
8. West Chester
9. CSU-Pueblo
10. Shepherd
11. West Alabama
12. Ohio Dominican
13. Emporia State
15. Winston-Salem State
16. Minnesota State Makato
17. UNC Pembroke
18. West Texas A&M
19. Indianapolis
20. North Alabama
21. Saginaw Valley
22. Azusa Pacific
23. Bloomsburg
24. Missouri Western
25. Tuskeegee

QB Kevin Rodgers, Henderson
RB Tyler Tonderum, SWMSU
RB Terrell Watson, Azusa Pacific
WR Darius Davis, Henderson
WR Trevor Harman, Shippensburg
TE Jamie Potts, GVSU
OL Joe Ray, L-R
OL Mitchell Weideman, St. Cloud
OL Isaiah Shelton, Shepherd
OL Cole Manhart, Kearney
OL Matthew Reese, Tuskegee
AP Marquez Clark, Central Oklahoma
K Brent Wahle, Ohio Dominican

DL Matt Longacre, NWMSU
DL Darius Allen, Pueblo
DL Charlie Tuaau, Commerce
LB Eric Reimer, NWMSU
LB Troy Guptil, Mary
LB Brian Harrington, Stonehill
DB Sammy Siasia, Mars Hill
DB Demarco Donaldson, Malone
DB Colin Kimball, Mercyhurst
DB EJ Jacob, Carson-Newman
P Patrick Carney, Highlands

QB Chris Bonner, Pueblo
RB Jeff Seybold, Pitt St
RB Isaiah Whitaker, L-R
WR Dimitri Holmes, Mars Hill
WR Paul Browning, Pueblo
TE Lucas Hefty, Upper Iowa
OL Karl Eichinger, St Cloud
OL Derek Schatz, West Chester
OL Cody Laubach, East Stroudsburg
OL Shadow Stokes, Midwestern
OL Jarrett Stastny, Emporia St
AP John Moscatel, S Conn St
K Jamie McGee, Ark Monticello

DL Kevin Brewton, Findlay
DL Jovontay Williams, JCSU
DL Julian Howsare, Clarion
DL Kenny Allen, Central Oklahoma
LB Collin Corcoran, Winona St
LB Tyler Zimmer, Seton Hill
LB Derrick Bryant, Indy
DB Jamaris Brown, Walsh
DB Brion Robinson, Lincoln
DB Kyler Harris, NE State
DB Isaiah Davis, Central Washington
P Kyle Jaski, Lincoln

Bears maul Eagles 37-3
November 2, 2013 Bears maul Eagles 37-3