UCO picked fifth in MIAA preseason poll

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association Tuesday announced its preseason football coaches’ poll as well as its preseason football media poll and the University of Central Oklahoma landed at fifth in the coaches’ poll and sixth in the media poll.

UCO received a total of 67 points in the coaches’ poll. Northwest Missouri is the preseason favorite according to the coaches. NWMSU, four first-place votes, totaled 103 points. Defending champion Fort Hays State had one more first-place vote than Northwest, but missed the top spot in the poll with 102 total points.

Central received 229 points in the media poll. The two polls are nearly identical, with the top-four teams the same. Emporia State, which is tied for fifth with UCO in the coaches’ poll, is ahead of the Bronchos for that spot in the media poll.


Central Oklahoma opens the 2018 season Thursday, Aug. 30 at Pittsburg State. The Bronchos will play their first home game of the new campaign in Week 2 when Central hosts Nebraska-Kearney on Thursday, Sept. 6.

UCO head coach Nick Bobeck brings a six-game winning streak into his seventh season in charge of the team he played for from 1999-2002. Bobeck led the Bronchos to wins in seven of their final eight games last season, including a win in the inaugural Corsicana Bowl.

“We don’t get too wrapped up in preseason polls,” Bobeck said Tuesday. “We are excited to get camp started next week and get to work and find out how good this team is going to be. We have a lot of good things going on at UCO right now and we’re ready to get to work and start playing some football.”

The Bronchos return five offensive starters from last year’s squad. That list doesn’t include Clay McKenzie, a sixth-year senior with over 2,600 yards rushing and 36 career rushing touchdowns. He only played six quarters last season due to a knee injury. Central also returns nine starters on defense. Alex Figueroa and Colton Lindsey, two linebackers that combined for 179 tackles last year are included in that bunch.

The preseason polls were released at the start of MIAA Football Media Day. Mckenzie and Figueroa joined Bobeck Tuesday to discuss the upcoming season.


Here are the complete polls.

MIAA Preseason Coaches’ Poll
(First-place votes in parentheses)
1. Northwest Missouri (4), 103 points
2. Fort Hays State (5), 102
3. Central Missouri, 96
4. Pittsburg State, 81
5. Central Oklahoma, 67
5. Emporia State, 67
7. Washburn, 63
8. Lindenwood, 46
9. Missouri Western, 40
10. Nebraska-Kearney, 30
11. Northeastern State, 19
12. Missouri Southern, 12

MIAA Preseason Media Poll
(First-place votes in parentheses)
1. Northwest Missouri (14), 382
2. Fort Hays State (13), 375
3. Central Missouri (6), 349
4. Pittsburg State (1), 311
5. Emporia State, 243
6. Central Oklahoma, 229
7. Washburn, 223
8. Missouri Western, 171
9. Lindenwood, 160
10. Nebraska-Kearney, 98
11. Northeastern State, 66
12. Missouri Southern, 45

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