CSJ Conference Preview: CAA

The James Madison Dukes have won the last two CAA football championships out right, winning the FCS National Championship following the 2016 season and finishing runner up to North Dakota State following the 2017 season.

In fact, the Dukes have not lost a conference game – regular season or playoff – under Mike Houston.

The Dukes will look to make it three outright titles in a row in 2018 (4 straight overall after sharing the 2015 title), but there are challengers lurking, hoping to close the gap and dethrone JMU.

However, there is no reason to think the Dukes won’t come out of the CAA slugfest with the title again.

Make no mistake, the CAA is not a top heavy league. There are 8-10 teams that enter the season with legitimate playoff hopes and an 11th , William and Mary will be playing inspired football as Coach Jimmye Laycock announced on August 5th that 2018 will be his last on the sideline.

CAA Football placed 4 teams (James Madison, New Hampshire, Stony Brook and Elon) in the 2017 playoffs and has 6 teams (the 4 abovementioned teams plus Villanova and Delaware) ranked in the preseason top 25. So, while JMU sits atop the perch, there is strong competition throughout the league.

The only thing that will keep the CAA from 5 or 6 playoff bids is the attrition within the CAA itself.

CSJ Preseason CAA Predicted Order of Finish:
1: James Madison
2: New Hampshire
3: Stony Brook
4: Elon
5: Delaware
6: Villanova
7: Richmond
8: Maine
9: Towson
10: Albany (NY)
11: William & Mary
12: Rhode Island

2018 CAA FOOTBALL PRESEASON ALL-CONFERENCE TEAM
(Selected by a vote of Head Coaches and Media Relations Directors)

OFFENSE
Name, SchoolCl.Pos.Ht.Wt.Hometown/High School
Trevor Knight, New Hampshire Sr. QB 6-0 198 Amherst, N.H./Nashua South
Kani Kane, Delaware Sr. RB 6-0 240 Bridgeville, Del./Sussex Tech
Marcus Marshall, James Madison Sr. RB 5-10 207 Raleigh, N.C./Millbrook
Cal Daniels, Stony Brook Sr. FB 6-2 255 Bethel, Conn./Bethel
Dejon Brissett, Richmond Sr. WR 6-2 190 Mississauga, Ontario/Lake Forest Acad.
Neil O’Connor, New Hampshire Sr. WR 5-11 182 Leominster, Mass./Leominster
Aaron Parker, Rhode Island Jr. WR 6-3 191 Brandywine, Md./Gwynn Park
Charles Scarff, Delaware Sr. TE 6-5 270 Lancaster, Pa./Lancaster Catholic
Mario Farinella, Delaware Sr. OL 6-0 300 Bloomfield, N.J./Bergen Catholic
Ethan Greenidge, Villanova Sr. OL 6-4 335 Flanders, N.Y./Riverhead
Jahee Jackson, James Madison Jr. OL 6-3 292 Baltimore, Md./Gilman
CJ Toogood, Elon Sr. OL 6-2 293 Holly Springs, N.C./Holly Springs
John Yarbrough, Richmond Sr. OL 6-5 285 Homewood, Ala./Homewood

DEFENSE
Name, SchoolCl.Pos.Ht.Wt.Hometown/High School
Darrious Carter, James Madison Sr. DL 6-5 235 Indiana, Pa./Indiana Senior
Andrew Clyde, Richmond Sr. DL 6-3 275 Dallas, Texas/Highland Park
Brandon Ginnetti, Rhode Island Jr. DL 6-3 275 East Haven, Conn./Cheshire Academy
Kayon Whitaker, Maine Jr. DL 6-3 235 Washington, D.C./Friendship Collegiate
Quinlen Dean, New Hampshire Jr. LB 6-0 227 Greenbelt, Md./Eleanor Roosevelt
Shayne Lawless, Stony Brook Sr. LB 6-1 225 Moorestown, N.J./Moorestown
Warren Messer, Elon Sr. LB 5-11 227 Garner, N.C./Garner
Troy Reeder, Delaware Sr. LB 6-2 245 Hockessin, Del/Salesianum
Nasir Adderley, Delaware Sr. S 6-0 190 Philadelphia, Pa./Great Valley
Rob Rolle, Villanova Sr. S 6-0 185 Newfield, N.J./Delsea
Jimmy Moreland, James Madison Sr. CB 5-11 172 Royal Palm Beach, Fla./Royal Palm Beach
Rashad Robinson, James Madison Sr. CB 5-11 182 Richmond, Va./Hermitage

SPECIAL TEAMS
Name, SchoolCl.Pos.Ht.Wt.Hometown/High School
Earnest Edwards, Maine Jr. KR 5-10 175 Rochester, N.Y./Aquinas Institute
Donovan McDonald, UAlbany Jr. PR 6-0 175 West Orange, N.J./Montclair
Griffin Trau, Richmond Sr. PK 5-8 170 Culver, Ind./Western Reserve Acad.
Harry O’Kelly, James Madison So. P 6-1 178 Wynnum, Queensland, Australia/Iona
Mozai Nelson, Maine Sr. SPEC 6-0 205 Uniondale, N.Y./St. Anthony’s

CAA FOOTBALL PRESEASON OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Trevor Knight, QB, New Hampshire
CAA FOOTBALL PRESEASON DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Rashad Robinson, CB, James Madisonmes Madison

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