|Photo by Kirstin Kelly,|
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Copyright 2017 TexSport Publications
HOUSTON, TEXAS (July 20, 2017) Sam Houston State University received 20 first place votes and the top spot in the pre-season football poll, as reveled at the 2017 Southland Conference Football Media Day. The Bearkats, who were 12-1 in 2016, return 13 starters and 55 lettermen and are picked to win the conference. They received 200 points in the poll, 23 points ahead of second place Central Arkansas . McNeese State is picked thrird, with 163 points, followed by Southeastern Louisiana (4th, 136 points), Nicholls (5th, 133 points) and Stephen F. Austin (6th, 114 points).
The Lamar Cardinals palced seventh (68 points), followed by Abilene Christian (8th, 66 points), Houston Baptist (9th, 56 points), Northwestern State (10th, 49 points) and University of the Incarnate Word (11th, 48 points). The Southland Conference kicks off the 2017 schedule on Sunday, August 27, 2017 with the Bearkats hosting Richmond.