facebooktwitterRSS
- Advertisement -
  • Most Commentedmost commented up
  • Most Emailedmost emailed up
  • Popularmost popular up
- Advertisement -
 

« News Home

CAPSULES Gateway Football Conference



Published: Fri, July 27, 2001 @ 12:00 a.m.



ILLINOIS STATE

Coach (year at school): Denver Johnson (second)

2000 record (Gateway finish): 7-4 overall, 4-2 Gateway (tied for second)

2001 predicted finish: fourth

Fast fact: The Redbirds finished the 2000 season with six straight wins to rank 24th nationally.

Coach's comment: "Our spirits are high, and the atmosphere is good around campus. We feel like we have a chance to have a good team again; we just hope we get a better start. Our early-season struggles kept us out of postseason competition."

INDIANA STATE

Coach: Tim McGuire (fourth)

2000 record: 1-10, 1-5 (seventh)

2001 predicted finish: eighth

Fast fact: The Sycamores will change from a run-option offensive attack to one with more balance. Nine starters return on defense.

Coach's comment: "The first thing I wrote down about this season was 'patience.' We needed to decide what to do with the offense. Changing our offense helped our defense this spring -- they're seeing more multiplicity."

NORTHERN IOWA

Coach: Mark Farley (first)

2000 record: 7-4, 3-3 (fourth)

2001 predicted finish: fifth

Fast fact: The Panthers recorded their 12th straight winning season in 2000 but narrowly missed the playoffs for the fourth straight time.

Coach's comment: "I've been here four months. The first thing we tried to do was evaluate. We still need to raise the bar of expectations; we have a good state to recruit from to get those [talented] players."

SOUTHERN ILLINOIS

Coach: Jerry Kill (first)

2000 record: 3-8, 2-4 (tied for fifth)

2001 predicted finish: seventh

Fast fact: Kill will attempt to lead the Salukis to their first winning season since 1991, when they went 7-4.

Coach's comment: "The biggest challenge we have is to get the kids to believe in themselves. Usually when a team has struggled, [the problem] has been attitude. We had 55 to 60 players who stayed all summer to work in the weight room; that is encouraging."

SOUTHWEST MISSOURI STATE

Coach: Randy Ball (third)

2000 record: 5-6, 2-4 (tied for fifth)

2001 predicted finish: sixth

Fast fact: The Bears have eight starters back on offense. That should help them break a streak of four consecutive 5-6 seasons. Their last winning season came in 1996, when they went 7-4.

Coach's comment: "Offense is our strength going into the season. We're thin in some areas, so we've got to stay healthy. The key for those [defensive] guys is to learn to play together. We need every day we have left to get ready for the season."

WESTERN ILLINOIS

Coach: Don Patterson (third)

2000 record: 9-3, 5-1 (first)

2001 predicted finish: third

Fast fact: The Leathernecks received four of the top five season-ending honors in the Gateway a year ago. Quarterback Sam Clemons should be one of the conference's best.

Coach's comment: "At the end of last season we had six first-team all-conference picks, and four graduated. The tradition of our program is that new guys step in and do the job."

WESTERN KENTUCKY

Coach: Jack Harbaugh (13th)

2000 record: 11-2, 7-0 in the Ohio Valley Conference (first)

2001 predicted finish: first

Fast fact: The Hilltoppers return 20 starters, including six All-Americans, from a team that reached the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division I-AA playoffs.

Coach's comment: "You don't invite a new kid on the block without making him pay the price. The schedule comes out, and we're going to Western Illinois. They won the league last year, didn't they?"

YOUNGSTOWN STATE

Coach: Jon Heacock (first)

2000 record: 9-3, 4-2 (tied for second)

2001 predicted finish: second

Fast fact: The Penguins reached the 2000 playoffs after a supposed "rebuilding" year. They return 23 seniors for Heacock, who has been on the school's coaching staff in seven of the past 10 years.

Coach's comment: "I just need to be myself -- be patient, yet be demanding. I just need to be honest with myself, our staff and the kids. I need to make sure that I'm doing what I can to help the team win."

-- Brian Richesson




Comments

Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.


News
Opinion
Entertainment
Sports
Marketplace
Classifieds
Records
Discussions
Community
Help
Forms
Neighbors

HomeTerms of UsePrivacy StatementAdvertiseStaff DirectoryHelp
© 2014 Vindy.com. All rights reserved. A service of The Vindicator.
107 Vindicator Square. Youngstown, OH 44503

Phone Main: 330.747.1471 • Interactive Advertising: 330.740.2955 • Classified Advertising: 330.746.6565
Sponsored Links: Vindy Wheels | Vindy Jobs | Vindy Homes | Pittsburgh International Airport