The Saint Xavier Cougars are listed at Number 2 in this year’s VSN Preseason Top 25, but I have their logo pictured here because not only do these Cougars hail from Chicago, the land of Rich Koz (AKA Son of Svengoolie AKA just plain Svengoolie) but their head coach, Mike Feminis, makes a habit of showing odd B-movies on the team bus on road trips! That little nugget came out in Balladeer’s Blog’s interview with three Cougar stars last football season. Anyway, sorry, CC Fighting Saints, the Number 1 team in the poll, but my love of bad movies trumps all other considerations where the SXU Cougars are concerned.
Not that I’ll be ignoring the Fighting Saints, the team that I always say “puts the ‘Hell’ in Helena, MT. ” They are the reigning champs of NAIA football, and with the departure of the University of Sioux Falls for NCAA Division 2 the Fighting Saints are once again the uncontested Top Dynasty in the sport. The Number 2 SXU Cougars fell on the road to CC in last year’s playoffs (yes, strangers to NAIA football, they settle their championship with a playoff) but start this season breathing down the necks of the boys from Helena. Here is the entire Top 25:
1. CC Fighting Saints … 2. SXU Cougars … 3. St Francis (IN) Cougars … 4. MidAmerica Nazarene Pioneers … 5. Morningside Mustangs … 6. Georgetown (KY) Tigers 7. Northwestern (IA) Red Raiders … 8. William Penn Statesmen … 9. Marian Knights … 10. Dickinson State Blue Hawks … 11. MVC Vikings … 12. Ottawa (KS) Braves … 13. NWOSU Rangers … 14. Azusa Pacific Cougars … 15. Cumberlands Patriots … 16. Midland Warriors … 17. Benedictine Ravens … 18. Cumberland (with NO “s”) Bulldogs … 19. Southern Nazarene Crimson Storm … 20. St Francis (IL) Fighting Saints … 21. Webber International Warriors … 22. Baker Wildcats … 23. McPherson Bulldogs … 24. Kansas Wesleyan Coyotes … 25. Sterling Knights