Aug. 26, 2009

Courtesy of Richmond Athletics

UNIVERSITY OF RICHMOND, Va. - After earning the Preseason No. 1 rating by The Sporting News in July, the Preseason FCS Coaches Poll has been unveiled with the reigning National Champion Richmond Spiders occupying the No. 2 spot. The Spiders open the 2009 season Sept. 5th at Duke.

The Spiders lead a record list of eight CAA Football squads ranked in the Preseason Coaches Poll - until now, no single conference in FCS history has ever had eight members ranked at a single time in the poll.

The Spiders garnered 10 first-place votes, trailing top-ranked Appalachian State by just three first-place votes and five total points overall. Villanova, a favorite to share the league's outright title with Richmond in 2009, was ranked No. 5. James Madison (sixth), New Hampshire (eighth), William & Mary (14th), Massachusetts (18th), Maine (19th) and Hofstra (24th) rounded out the list.

With Delaware receiving votes, the league has nine of its 12 squads recognized in the Poll.

Other preseason ranking for the Spiders include: No. 1 (The Sportsing News and AGS), No. 2 (Athlon Sports and Lindy's), and No. 5 (Phil Steele). This marks the first time in team history Richmond has entered the season ranked No. 1.

Richmond finished the 2008 season ranked No. 1 in each of the major FCS polls after capturing the school's first-ever NCAA Championship with a 24-7 thumping of Montana in the Division I National Championship game.

Eighteen starters return from that Championship team, which head coach Mike London guided in his first season as a head coach. The 1983 Richmond alum earned multiple National Coach of the Year honors for his efforts, including the AFCA's top FCS honor.