FOREST, Va. – The Emory & Henry College Football Team has been picked to finish fourth in the 2016 Old Dominion Athletic Conference season, ODAC officials announced Monday. The league's eight football coaches are the voters in the poll.
Coming off of an 6-4 (4-3 ODAC) season last year, Emory & Henry, under third-year Head Coach Curt Newsome, returns five All-ODAC players and eight starters from last year's team. The cupboard is far from bare however, as many of this year’s projected starters saw significant playing time during the 2015 campaign.
“Anytime you have a poll it’s usually based on the number of returning starters and I’m sure that where we were placed in that is based on who we had coming back", said Newsome. "We lost some guys who - for whatever reason were not able to return to school, but on the other side of the coin, we have some newcomers and transfers who are pretty good football players and will help our program.”
Last season’s conference champion, Washington and Lee University, is picked to win its fourth title in seven years with six of eight first-place votes. Hampden-Sydney College, which has taken three ODAC titles in the last five years, is second while Guilford College finds itself picked third with the final two top nods split between the Tigers and Quakers.
Emory & Henry follows with their fourth-place pick. Bridgewater College and Randolph-Macon College are tied for fifth place while Shenandoah University and The Catholic University of America are seventh and eighth, respectively.
“We feel good about our camp to this point and I think we are heading in the right direction,” Newsome added. “Am I glad we’re not playing this Saturday? Yes – I think we need the allotted time we have left to become a better football team. But I think we are making strides in that direction.”
Emory & Henry will begin the 2016 campaign on Saturday, September 3 when it visits Ferrum College at 1:00 p.m. It will be the 11th-straight season that the Wasps and Panthers have opened the season together on the gridiron and marks the inaugural contest of the newly-created Crooked Road Classic.
For more information about ODAC Football and to learn about each of the league's eight teams, click HERE.
-photo courtesy of David Grace
2016 ODAC FOOTBALL
|(#) Denotes First Place Votes|
|1. Washington and Lee (6)||48 pts.|
|2. Hampden-Sydney (1)
|3. Guilford (1)||35 pts.|
|4. Emory & Henry
|5. Bridgewater||23 pts.|
|7. Shenandoah||16 pts.|
|8. Catholic||7 pts.|