The Citadel cracks top 25 in national polls for first time since 2008
CHARLESTON, S.C. -- On the heels of its dramatic 23-21 victory against then third-ranked Georgia Southern, The Citadel has entered the top 25 in both The Sports Network and FCS Coaches polls.
The Bulldogs, off to their first 2-0 start since 2007, are No. 21 in The Sports Network poll and are ranked 23rd by the coaches. This marks the first time The Citadel has been in either national poll since spending seven weeks among the nation's elite in 2008, reaching as high as No. 12 that season.
This is the second season in which The Citadel has been ranked in eight years under head coach Kevin Higgins. In addition to their run in 2008, the Bulldogs made a brief appearance at No. 25 in 2007. Prior to that, The Citadel had not been ranked since spending two weeks in the polls during the 1993 campaign.
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The win against Georgia Southern was the first time The Citadel had knocked off a top-10 opponent since a 23-20 overtime win against East Tennessee State in 1997, and the Eagles represented the highest-ranked victim since a 20-3 victory against No. 1 Marshall in 1988.
The highest ranking in Citadel history came in its 1992 Southern Conference championship season when the Bulldogs spent four weeks as the No. 1 team in the country, finishing the regular season in that spot before losing to Youngstown State in the second round of the Division I-AA playoffs.
The Citadel will look to make it two ranked victims in a row this week as it faces No. 8 Appalachian State. The last time The Citadel was involved in a game in which both teams were in the top 25 came in 2008 when the No. 24 Bulldogs lost to No. 19 Furman 34-20. The Citadel fell out of the rankings after that loss and did not appear again until this week.
The Southern Conference has four teams in the top 25 this week. In addition to The Citadel and Appalachian State, Wofford and Georgia Southern also made the cut. The Terriers (2-0) are ninth in both polls while the Eagles (1-1) remained several spots ahead of the Bulldogs, coming in at No. 10.