PLYMOUTH, N.H. – Plymouth State College has been picked third in the 1999 Freedom Football Conference pre-season coaches’ poll, it was announced Monday.
The Panthers, who will be guided by new head coach Chris Rorke, finished behind defending champion and pre-season favorite Springfield College and second-place Kings Point in the pre-season poll. Springfield received five first-place votes and 47 points, while Kings Point took in the other two first-place votes and 42 points. PSC received 34 points, followed by Western Connecticut with 28, Norwich with 21, WPI with 17 and Coast Guard with 7.
PSC, 7-4 overall in 1998 under head coach Mike Kemp, shared the FFC runner-up position with Kings Point, both with 4-2 conference marks. Springfield posted a perfect 6-0 FFC record, earning a bid to the NCAA tournament and finishing 9-2 overall.
The Panthers open up the 1999 campaign at home on Saturday, Sept. 11, against Salve Regina University. PSC and Salve met in the last game of the ’98 campaign, with the Seahawks handing the Panthers a 36-6 defeat in the ECAC Northeast Championship game in Newport, RI.
PANTHER NOTES: PSC has elected a pair of seniors to serve as team captains in ’99: Colt Meredith (Saugus, MA) and Dan DeMuth (LeMars, Iowa). Meredith will anchor the Panther defense after receiving All-East Region, All-New England and All-FFC honors as a defensive back in ’98, while DeMuth is likely to start at fullback in ’99 after playing linebacker in his first season at PSC in ’98……One PSC player has earned Pre-Season All-America honors by usafootball.com. Junior center Chris Belmont (Campton, NH) received the recognition after numerous post-season honors in 1998……Plymouth State will have one game televised live this season on WMUR-TV, an ABC affiliate out of Manchester, NH: the Homecoming game against Springfield on Oct. 16 at Currier Field…..Coach Rorke has filled out the Panther coaching staff for 1999, which includes just two members of Coach Kemp’s staff: Paul Niemi and Fred Quinlan. The new members of the staff include Kirk Jellerson, John Rhodes, Matt Botz, Mike Fanning, Kevin Hebert, and Marc Turcotte.