Contact: Mark Albanese, Director of Sports Communication
HILLSBORO, Ore. - The Northwest Conference unveiled its preseason coaches' poll for football on Monday with Pacific Lutheran University projected to finish fourth in the league standings.
The Lutes (5-4, 4-3 NWC in 2016) collected 32 points to secure the fourth spot in the coaches' poll, finishing just five points shy of third ranked George Fox University (5-4, 5-2 NWC).
Defending league champion Linfield College (9-2, 7-0 NWC) sits atop the charts, garnering 56 points and seven of the eight first place endorsements. Whitworth University (8-2, 6-1 NWC) was second with 42 points and the remaining first place endorsement.
George Fox and PLU slot at No. 3 and No. 4 respectively followed by Pacific University (4-6, 3-4 NWC) in fifth with 26 points, Willamette University (3-7, 2-5 NWC) in sixth with 17 points. The University of Puget Sound (3-6, 1-6 NWC) claimed the seventh spot with 14 points with Lewis & Clark College (0-9, 0-7 NWC) rounding out the poll with eight points.
Voting was conducted by the league's eight head coaches with each coach selecting the order of finish of the seven other NWC institutions.
The Lutes, returning three Second Team All-NWC selections and four Honorable Mention All-NWC picks, open the 2017 season against California Lutheran University on Sept. 9 in Thousand Oaks, California and begin NWC action on Sept. 30, hosting crosstown rival University of Puget Sound at 1 p.m. inside Sparks Stadium.