SWAC football: familiar faces at the top in 2017

The results have all been tabulated and we’re pleased to announce no surprises at the top of the standings in the SWAC football wars in 2017. A group made up of the conference’s head coaches and sports information directors has predicted conference defending champion Grambling to repeat as the winner of the West Division and 3 time East Division champs Alcorn State will once again win the East.

Southern, Prairie View A&M, Texas Southern and Arkansas-Pine Bluff round out the preseason predictions in the West. Meanwhile Alabama State, Jackson State, Alabama A&M and Mississippi Valley State are all predicted to fall in line behind Alcorn.

“Being picked first is great, but now we are being hunted. We have to make sure we are prepared since we have a target on our back,” said Alcorn head coach Fred McNair. “It’s an honor to be picked first, but we have to play as if we were picked last. The games are always won on the field and we can’t overlook that.”

Grambling QB Devante Kincade was the voters’ choice for the SWAC Preseason Offensive Player of the Year award.  Kincade completed 63 percent of his passes and threw for 3,022 yards with 31 touchdowns against just four interceptions in 2016.

Jackson State defensive end Keontre Anderson was tabbed as the SWAC Preseason Defensive Player of the Year after leading the nation with 25.5 tackles for a loss to go along with nine sacks and six hurries.