Bryant DIII - Season 90 Preview
Last season was the one for up and coming coaches and teams, with a lot of the favorites being eliminated early in the playoffs, and Gettysburg not even making them… That was probably a big indication of how huge the randomness is getting in this game (hopefully this will be fixed with 3.0, one can always hope…)
After a long season, ahaney257 took bisoneer’s recruits at Loras all the way and won it all, beating Loras’ archrival Susquehanna in the national championship game. Robert Gagnon was the season MVP, and rightfully so. Loras will be counting on him to repeat, and I know I say this every season, but nobody has won back-to-back national championships in DIII Bryant since rparazine’s Shenandoah in Season 72!
From what you will see below, it looks like this will be another “open” season, and pretty much everyone from the list below can win it all. So without further delay, here are the Bryant DIII Season 90 elkhour Power Rankings (EPR).
Offense rating: 579 (rank 2)
Defense rating: 571 (rank 1)
Overall rating: 575 (rank 1)
Analysis: What can we say about bugeaters11 and Ferrum? Bug is one of the best coaches in Bryant DIII, bolstering a 322-41 overall record in his 23-season illustrious career, winning 10 conference championships (including the last 7 seasons) and 1 national championship in the process, not to mention that he will be looking for his 20th consecutive playoff appearance in season 90. It hasn’t been strange for me to see Ferrum in the EPR Top 3 ever since I started writing this thread, and this season, they have the team to make a true national championship contender.
Key Games: Waynesburg (Week 5), Greensboro (Week 9), @ Methodist (Week 10)
Offense rating: 585 (rank 1)
Defense rating: 560 (rank 5)
Overall rating: 572 (rank 2)
Analysis: Another one of the great coaches is elkhour at Concordia (WI), with a 155-24 overall record in 11 seasons so far, including 8 conference championships and a national championship. While Concordia tops the press and coaches rankings, we have them at #2 in the EPR. A team that has recently been famous for their defensive intensity is looking different this season, as the offense looks the one who will be looking to command the field, and take the team as far as they can go. If the defense is able to step up, don’t be surprised to see Concordia still playing late in the post-season.
Key Games: Maine Maritime (Week 1), @ St. Thomas (Week 3), @ Macalester (Week 5)
Offense rating: 563 (rank 6)
Defense rating: 569 (rank 3)
Overall rating: 566 (rank 3)
Analysis: National champions 3 seasons ago, and eliminated by Concordia last season, Austin is looking absolutely this season around, because the defense is championship-caliber. This is a team that loves to run the ball and control the game, and with this kind of defense, it is definitely able to win back what was taken away from them in the last couple of seasons.
Key Games: Methodist (Week 5), @ California Lutheran (Week 11)
Offense rating: 574 (rank 3)
Defense rating: 555 (rank 6)
Overall rating: 564 (rank 4)
Analysis: Watch out for the national runner-ups, this is the highest they have ever been in the preseason EPR, and it’s well deserved. Another deep playoff run looks highly probably from the team who destroyed Huntingdon in the playoffs last season, and tannhauser will be looking forward for that.
Key Games: Union (NY) (Week 5), @ Fairleigh Dickinson (Week 6), King’s (Week 9)
Offense rating: 562 (rank 7)
Defense rating: 562 (rank 4)
Overall rating: 562 (rank 5)
Analysis: Well superv97 is gone up to DII, and it falls to the new coach coachcrow to keep Huntingdon where they have been in the last 20 seasons. It shouldn’t be a big problem with the quality talent that they have, as this is a well balanced team that is very dangerous all around the field. The biggest question for them this season will be whether their inexperienced coach can make it happen.
Key Games: @ Benedictine (Week 3), Greenville (Week 5), @ New Jersey (Week 8)
Offense rating: 547 (rank 13)
Defense rating: 570 (rank 2)
Overall rating: 558 (rank 6)
Analysis: Sadly enough, it looks like Guilford is on auto-pilot… This is too bad as they have one of the best defenses in the nation in DIII, and this team can definitely compete. I seriously hope that I’m mistaken, or that bce98a comes back if I am not, because it is very unfortunate to see a team loaded with talent being left like that.
Key Games: Curry (Week 5), Washington and Lee (Week 6), @ Bluffton (Week 8)
Offense rating: 565 (rank 5)
Defense rating: 542 (rank 9)
Overall rating: 553 (rank 7)
Analysis: Ok so we said it already… Last season, Gettysburg missed the playoffs for the first time in the last 20. Hallgren will definitely make his 800th career win this season, but he definitely wants more than that to celebrate, and unless the engine ironically plays him like last season, it looks like he has a team that can make it to the promise land once again.
Key Games: @ Carleton (Week 1), Greenville (Week 2), Union (NY) (Week 6)
Offense rating: 551 (rank 11)
Defense rating: 547 (rank 8)
Overall rating: 549 (rank 8)
Analysis: Here are the defending national champs, can they make it happen? Well, Robert Gagnon certainly can, and the rest of this team is also good enough. The new coach has proven his worth from the first season he took over this team, and there is no reason to think he shouldn’t be able to lead them for another deep playoff run.
Key Games: Cornell (Week 6), @ Waynesburg (Week 7), @ Washington and Jefferson (Week 8)
Offense rating: 545 (rank 15)
Defense rating: 550 (rank 7)
Overall rating: 547 (rank 9)
Analysis: Experienced coach mojolad returns to DIII after 2 seasons at Wingate, and takes over lawhorns’ old team Colorado College. Colorado made the playoffs for the 12th consecutive time last season, but for the 11th out of 12 times, they couldn’t go past the second round. Mojolad has gone one and done in the playoffs in the last 5 seasons, 3 with Waynesburg and 2 with Wingate. This time however, he surely has the team to do better, although the offense looks a little bit under par.
Key Games: Wisconsin Lutheran (Week 8), Martin Luther (Week 9), Macalester (Week 12)
Offense rating: 556 (rank 9)
Defense rating: 535 (rank 10)
Overall rating: 545 (rank 10)
Analysis: Do not be fooled by the press and coaches’ preseason rankings, as both have St. Olaf at #22. This is a much better team than it is ranked, and they have a very experienced coach that has made the playoffs for 12 consecutive times. Loaded on defense, and lead by QB Rick Odom, this team will be tough to beat, and don’t be surprised to see them on the edge of the Final Four come playoff time. With the MIAC getting very competitive lately, St. Olaf will have to get past St. Thomas and Carleton for a perfect regular season.
Key Games: St. Thomas (Week 6), Carleton (Week 9), @ Westminster (Week 13)