Eagles lead SoCon preseason squad - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Eagles lead SoCon preseason squad

July 26, 2005

Spartanburg, S.C. -  The Southern Conference head football coaches named 14 Georgia Southern players to the preseason All-Southern Conference teams that were announced Tuesday at the annual SoCon Football Rouser in Spartanburg, South Carolina.

The Eagles had the most preseason selections, including eight named to the First Team.

 Running back Jermaine Austin finished second in the Preseason 'Offensive Player of the Year' balloting behind Appalachian State quarterback Richie Williams.

 Austin, needing 12 yards to overtake second place on the GSU career rushing yards list, enters his senior year with 3,865 yards.

 He gained a team-high 988 yards in 10 games last year and scored five touchdowns, averaging 6.3 yards per carry.

Austin, the SoCon 'Offensive Player of the Year' in 2003, was named as the preseason top offensive player last year.

Wide receiver Teddy Craft, All-America offensive guard Chad Motte, return specialist Jayson Foster, place kicker Jonathan Dudley, All-America defensive back A.J. Bryant, defensive back Terence McBride and punter Dan Jordan joined Austin on the First Team.

The Second Team included: offensive guard Travlis Sims of Ameircus, center Lance Wayne, defensive lineman Charrod Taylor, linebacker John Mohring and defensive backs Tariq Muhammad and Lewis Barr. All four of Georgia Southern's projected starters in the secondary earned preseason accolades as did both sides of the kicking game.

Furman was next with nine players chosen followed by Appalachian State with seven honorees.

According to a preseason vote by the league's head coaches, Furman is their pick to win the regular season title with six first-place votes for 44 points.

Georgia Southern, which shared the Southern Conference title with the Paladins last year, was second with 44 points and two first-place votes.

Appalachian State came in third place (35 points), followed by Western Carolina and Wofford (29 each) tied for fourth. Chattanooga (17), The Citadel (12) and Elon (10) rounded out the poll.

The Southern Conference Sports Media Association also picked Furman to win the regular season title with Georgia Southern coming in second place.

Returning 11 starters from last year's 9-3 squad, Georgia Southern opens the 2005 campaign on September 3rd at Northeastern. The home opener against McNeese State is the following Saturday, September 10th.

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