Blazers move into number one slot - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Blazers move into number one slot

October 21, 2003

 Valdosta- Polls are really meaningless in Division II football.

 After all, there is a playoff at the end of the season to crown a national champion.

But this week when Valdosta State fans say there Blazers are number one, they truly are.

Valdosta State is ranked number one in this week's American Football Coaches Association Division II poll after Grand Valley State, the team that beat the Blazers in last year's division two national championship game, lost to Saginaw Valley State on Saturday.

It is the first time in 23 weeks someone other than Grand Valley State was ranked number one in the AFCA D-II poll and the first time the Blazers have occupied the top spot since of
November  2001.

The Blazers are counting their lucky stars they are still unbeaten after their 26-21 win over Central Arkansas.

The Lions had the ball on the five yard line but a would be winning touchdown pass fell incomplete in the endzone giving the Blazers their  27th straight Gulf South Conference win, which is a new conference record.

Head coach Chris Hatcher said "I told our team last week it is time for us to be number one but it kinda of almost backfired on us because we almost got defeated. That is our goal is to be number one of course we want to be there at the end of the season."

Sophomore quarterback Barrett Wilkes said "It is a good feeling but now that just means everybody is going to be shooting for us a little bit more so we have to play a little bit better and live up to the number one ranking."

Number one ranked Valdosta State plays at West Alabama on Saturday with 4th ranked North Alabama coming to Valdosta on November 1st for what will be the game of the year in the Gulf South Conference.