Bears football picked fifth in Preseason Top 25 poll – Ozarks Sports Zone

SPRINGFIELD – Missouri State is picked fifth in the Stats Perform Preseason Top 25 football poll released Monday (Aug. 8).
Along with the weekly AFCA poll, the Stats Perform Top 25 is considered the official poll ranking for FCS college football.
The Stats Top 25 features five Missouri Valley Football Conference programs, including the Bears at No. 5, North Dakota State (1), South Dakota State (2), Southern Illinois (9), and Northern Iowa (21). The opponent for Missouri State’s home opener, UT Martin, is ranked No. 18 in the Stats Perform preseason rankings, with other 2022 Bears foes South Dakota and Central Arkansas receiving votes.
 
Coach Bobby Petrino enters his third season as Missouri State head coach with 17 starters and 41 lettermen returning from an 8-4 squad that finished as runners-up in the Missouri Valley while making the NCAA FCS Playoffs for the second straight season.
The Bears’ preseason ranking is the club’s highest national preseason poll position in program history, topping the club’s previous high-water mark of No. 7 in 1990. MSU was ranked No. 5 in the Athlon Sports Top 25 on August 2, while being picked No. 6 in the Hero Sports Preseason Top 25 on May 18.
Missouri State kicks off the 2022 season on Thursday, Sept. 1 at Central Arkansas before the club’s home opener a week later on Sept. 8 in a playoff rematch against UT Martin at Robert W. Plaster Stadium. 
STATS PERFORM PRESEASON FCS TOP 25
1. North Dakota State (52)
2. South Dakota State (2)
3. Montana 
4. Montana State 
5. Missouri State 
6. Villanova 
7. Sacramento State 
8. Kennesaw State 
9. Southern Illinois 
10. Stephen F. Austin
11. ETSU
12. Chattanooga 
13. Eastern Washington 
14. UIW 
15. Jackson State 
16. Holy Cross 
17. Southeastern Louisiana 
18. UT Martin 
19. Delaware
20. Weber State 
21. Northern Iowa 
22. Rhode Island 
23. Mercer 
24. Richmond 
25. UC Davis 
Others Receiving Votes: South Dakota 151, Eastern Kentucky  129, Florida A&M 78, William & Mary 66, Dartmouth 59, Monmouth 23, Harvard 19, Princeton 18, Central Arkansas 14, Furman 14, South Carolina State 13, Sacred Heart 12, Elon 8, North Carolina A&T 4.

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