SEWARD, Neb. – A season after tying for third place in the GPAC standings, the Concordia University Football program has been slotted in at No. 4 in the 2022 GPAC Preseason Coaches’ Poll released on Thursday (Aug. 11) by the conference office. Head Coach Patrick Daberkow’s squad generated 72 points in the poll and was listed behind league favorites Morningside, Northwestern and Dordt.
The Bulldogs concluded the 2021 season at 7-3 overall. The win total marked the program’s highest since also going 7-3 in 2016. Daberkow’s squad also garnered votes in the NAIA preseason coaches’ poll released on Aug. 1.
Said Daberkow, “I think we have reason to believe that we can be an improved football team from last year’s 7-3 team. We feel like we have some momentum from last season that carried over through the summer. That momentum can only carry you so far. The team kind of resets in the spring. It’s good to have a lot of key players back. We’re excited for what’s to come.”
Concordia returns seven starters on offense and six on defense. The headlining returners include tight end Garrett Schardt and center Johnny Robinson III, both 2021 first team all-conference selections. Also on offense, the Bulldogs bring back quarterback DJ McGarvie, who threw for 19 touchdown passes last season as a true freshman. Defensively, lineman Jordan Kavulak tops the holdovers with his nine tackles for loss in 2021. The Concordia defense limited foes to averages of 19.3 points and 311.6 yards per game last season.
The 2022 season will open at Doane on Saturday, Sept. 3 with kickoff set for 7 p.m. CT in Crete. The Bulldogs will attempt to extend their series win streak to three.
2022 GPAC Football Preseason Coaches’ Poll
- First-place votes in parentheses
1. Morningside – 100 (10)
2. Northwestern – 91 (1)
3. Dordt – 77
4. Concordia – 72
5. Midland – 69
6. Doane – 52
7. Dakota Wesleyan – 42
8. Hastings – 33
9. Jamestown – 32
10. Briar Cliff – 26
11. Mount Marty – 11