Blue Raiders picked third; Gendreau named All-SBC

Team reports Aug. 7

July 18, 2011 · Athletic Communications

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - Middle Tennessee picked to tie for third in Sun Belt Conference football race as announced by the league office during its annual Football Media Days on Monday.

The preseason poll is voted on by the league's nine head coaches who gave the Blue Raiders 54 total points to tie Louisiana-Monroe. FIU had 75 points and five first place votes to grab the top spot followed by Troy with 66 points and two first place votes. Arkansas State was fifth followed by North Texas, WKU, Louisiana-Lafayette, and Florida Atlantic. The final two first place votes went to Arkansas State and WKU who are coming off 4-8 and 2-10 seasons, respectively.

The Sun Belt's coaches and selected media also selected the preseason players of the year and all-conference team on Monday.

Senior placekicker Alan Gendreau was the lone Blue Raider selected to the team. A semifinalist for the 2009 Lou Groza Award, Gendreau is a two-time First Team All-SBC pick and currently ranks third all-time in field goals made and extra points. The Apopka, Fla., native is the most accurate kicker in school history at 79.1 percent (38-48) which includes a career long 55-yard boot in a win at ULL in 2010.

The Blue Raiders report to camp on August 7 in preparation for the season opener at Purdue on September 3. Kickoff is scheduled for 11:00 AM on the Big Ten Network.

Preseason All-Sun Belt Team
As voted on by the Sun Belt Head Coaches and Media Representatives

Preseason All-Sun Belt Conference Offense
Corey Robinson (Troy, So., QB)
Lance Dunbar (NT, Sr., RB)
Bobby Rainey (WKU, Sr., RB)
Dwayne Frampton (ASU, Sr., WR)
T.Y. Hilton (FIU, Sr., WR)
Luther Ambrose (ULM, Sr., WR)
Ladarius Green (ULL, Sr., TE)
Tom Castilaw (ASU, Sr. OL)
Caylin Hauptmann (FIU, Jr., OL)
Ryan McCaul (ULM, Sr., OL)
Matt Tomlinson (NT, Sr., OL)
James Brown (Troy, Sr., OL)
Wes Jeffries (WKU, Sr., OL)

Preseason All-Sun Belt Conference Defense
Dorvus Woods (ASU, Sr., DL)
Tourek Williams (FIU, Jr., DL)
Ken Dorsey (ULM, Sr., DL)
Jonathan Massaquoi (Troy, Jr., DL)
Demario Davis (ASU, Sr., LB)
Winston Fraser (FIU, Jr., LB)
Xavier Lamb (Troy, Sr., LB)
Kelcie McCray (ASU, Sr., DB)
Jonathan Cyprien (FIU, Jr., DB)
Marcus Bartels, FAU, Sr., DB)
Darius Prelow (ULM, Sr., DB)

Preseason All-Sun Belt Special Teams
Alan Gendreau
(MT, Sr., Kicker)
Mickey Groody (FAU, Sr., Punter)
T.Y. Hilton (FIU, Sr., Return Specialist)

Co-Preseason Offensive Players of the Year
T.Y. Hilton (FIU, Sr., WR)
Lance Dunbar (NT, Sr., RB)

Preseason Defensive Player of the Year
Jonathan Massaquoi (Troy, Jr., DL)

The Preseason Sun Belt Conference Coaches Poll is selected by the head coach of each institution. First place votes in parenthesis.

Team Points
1. FIU 75 (5)
2. Troy 66 (2)
T-3. Middle Tennessee 54
T-3. Louisiana-Monroe 54
5. Arkansas State 49 (1)
6. North Texas 33
7. WKU 28 (1)
8. Louisiana-Lafayette 26
9. Florida Atlantic 20

Follow the Blue Raiders on Twitter @MTAthletics for continued updates.