Bulldogs land at No. 6 in GPAC preseason football poll

By Jacob Knabel on Aug. 8, 2023 in Football

GPAC Release

SEWARD, Neb. – After tying for sixth place in the conference in 2022, the Concordia University Football program has been pegged at No. 6 in the 2023 GPAC Preseason Football Coaches’ Poll. The conference unveiled the poll on Tuesday (Aug. 8) and revealed defending national champion Northwestern to be the GPAC favorite. The Bulldogs collected a total of 57 points in the poll, putting them just behind Hastings (59) at No. 5.

Head Coach Patrick Daberkow is entering his seventh season leading the Concordia program. The Bulldogs went 4-6 last season while gaining momentum late in the year. Behind record-setting quarterback DJ McGarvie, Concordia averaged 33.2 points per game over the season’s final six outings.

At a media day for Nebraska college football programs held on July 17, Daberkow stated, “We have some goals for the team that we’ve talked about in the locker room during spring ball. As a coaching staff, we just want to see those goals being lived out on a daily basis at the micro level. I wish I could bring our whole group of upperclassmen to media day. We have a great group in the locker room putting the work in to obtain the goals we’ve set.”

The Bulldogs will return All-GPAC honorees Michael Grindey (first team), Devon Polley (second team), Isiaha Conner (honorable mention), Luke Lang (honorable mention) and McGarvie (honorable mention). McGarvie and the passing game took flight in 2022. The signal caller out of Lincoln North Star High School broke program single season passing records for completions (229), attempts (388), yards (2,553) and completion percentage (59.0). McGarvie’s top returning receiving threats include Lang and receivers Austin Jablonski and Carsen Arline.

Daberkow’s squad reported to campus on Monday, allowing for nearly a month to prepare for the season opener with Northwestern on Sept. 2. Kickoff from Bulldog Stadium on that date is slated for 1 p.m. CT. The Red Raiders finished last season at 13-1 overall with the only loss coming to Morningside during the regular season. The complete Concordia schedule can be found HERE.

2023 GPAC Preseason Football Coaches’ Poll
(1st place votes)

1. Northwestern – 98 (8)
2. Morningside – 93 (3)
3. Dordt – 78
4. Midland – 75
5. Hastings – 59
6. Concordia – 57
7. Jamestown – 38
8. Doane – 36
9. Mount Marty – 30
10. Dakota Wesleyan – 27
11. Briar Cliff – 14