Valparaiso University's football team has been predicted to finish in seventh place in the Pioneer Football League this season according to the preseason balloting done by the league's head coaches.
Head coach Stacy Adams' squad garnered 15 points and was picked to finish ahead of Butler in 2006 as the PFL returns to one eight-team league as opposed to the two-division format used during the past five years.
San Diego, last year's PFL champion, was picked to repeat, followed by Dayton and Drake. Morehead State was tabbed fourth, with Jacksonville and Davidson picked fifth and sixth respectively.
Ballots were tabulated with seven points for a first place vote, with one point less being awarded for each succeeding place. Coaches were not allowed to vote for their own school.
Valpo went 3-8 overall and 103 in the PFL North in 2005, finishing in fourth place in the division.
The Crusaders will open up their 2006 season on Saturday, September 2 when the Crusaders travel to Milwaukee, Wis. to battle Wisconsin Lutheran.
2006 Pioneer Football League Preseason Poll
Team - Points
1. San Diego (5) - 45
2. Dayton (2) - 43
3. Drake - 37
4. Morehead State - 32
5. Jacksonville (1) - 26
6. Davidson - 17
7. Valparaiso - 15
8. Butler - 9
(First place votes in parentheses)