2016 FCS Preview: The Northeast Conference

NEC LogoHere at CSJ, we are previewing the upcoming 2016 season, and we are counting up from 7 to 1 as to who we think how NEC football will shake itself out.

Last season saw Duquesne win their first-ever NEC title, and saw them rewarded with a trip to Williamsburg, Virginia in the FCS playoffs to face off against powerful William and Mary of the CAA.

In a thrilling back-and-forth affair, the Dukes racked up 540 yards in a highly entertaining 52-49 defeat – and have Duquesne fans hungry for a repeat performance.

In the coming week, you’ll see here links to all of CSJ’s NEC preview capsules, CSJ’s preseason order of finish, and CSJ’s preseason all-NEC team.

CSJ Predicted Order of Finish:

  1. Duquesne Dukes
  2. St. Francis (PA) Red Flash
  3. Sacred Heart Pioneers
  4. Bryant Bulldogs
  5. Central Connecticut State Blue Devils
  6. Wagner Seahawks
  7. Robert Morris Colonials

CSJ Preseason All-NEC team

Preseason Offensive Player of the Year: QB R.J. Noel, Sacred Heart
Preseason Defensive Player of the Yar: LB Christian Kuntz, Duquensne

QB: R.J. Noel, Sr., Sacred Heart (Lowell, MA/Lowell)
RB: Rafiq Douglas, So., Duquesne (Lusby, MD/Patuxent)
RB: Cameron Nash, So., Central Connecticut State (Smyrna, DE/West Virginia)
WR: Kyle Buss, R-So., Robert Morris (Mechanicsville, NY/Milford Academy)
WR: Moses Webb, Sr., Sacred Heart (Manassas, VA/Bishop Ireton)
WR: Wayne Capers Junior, Sr., Duquesne (Pittsburgh, PA/Chartiers Valley/Arizona)
TE/HB: Ryan Owens, Gr. Wagner (Gainesville, NY/ Letchworth)
OL: Dan Bucholz, Sr., Duquesne (Malvern, PA/Great Valley)
OL: Sam Freireich, Sr., St. Francis (PA) (Austin, TX/Westlake)
OL: Tyler Cardoze, Sr., Bryant (Corona, NY/Cushing Academy)
OL: Ben Huss, Jr., Duquesne (Upper St. Clair, PA/Upper St. Clair)
OL: Jimmy Marks, Sr., St. Francis (PA) (Middletown, PA/Lower Dauphin)

DL: Wesley Nagaseu, Sr., St. Francis (PA) (Waipahu, HI/Waipahu)
DL: Asia Bolling, Sr., Central Connecticut State (Stratford, CT/Milford Academy)
DL: Ryan Cottrell, Sr., Sacred Heart (Montvale, NJ/Blair Academy)
DL: Chris Tinkham, So., Central Connecticut State (Lynn, MA / East Coast Prep)
LB: Christian Kuntz, Sr., Duquesne (Pittsburgh, PA/Chartiers Valley)
LB: Sam Martello, Sr. Duquesne (Westlake, Ohio/St. Edward)
LB: Kellen Sperduto, Sr., Sacred Heart (Oldwick, PA/Greensburg CC)
LB: James Rentz, Sr., Sacred Heart (St. Augustine, FL/St. Augustine)
DB: Lorenzo Jerome, Sr., St. Francis (PA) (Sunrise, FL/J.P. Taravella)
DB: Jevon Elmore, Sr., Central Connectiut State (New London, CT/USMA Prep)
DB: Chuckie Wingate, Sr., Bryant (Englewood, NJ/Bergen Catholic)
DB: Trenton Coles, Sr., Duquesne (Clarion, PA/Pittsburgh)

K: Lance Geesey, Sr., St. Francis (PA) (Harrisburg, PA/Cumberland Valley)
P: Bryan Rafano, Sr., Wagner (South River, NJ/St. Joe’s Metuchen)
RS: Lorenzo Jerome, Jr., St. Francis (PA) (Sunrise, FL/J.P. Taravella)

Official NEC Media Day Releases:

NEC Press Release: NEC Media Day: Preseason Poll And Preseason All-NEC team (PDF)

NEC Press Release: Coaches Believe Defending #NECFB Champion Duquesne Stands Poised to Repeat

Sacred Heart QB R.J. Noel (Sacred Heart Athletics)
Sacred Heart QB R.J. Noel (Sacred Heart Athletics)
Duquesne LB Christian Kuntz
Duquesne LB Christian Kuntz