Vikings likely to top CIAA eastern division

April Emory
July 24, 2009

The Elizabeth City State University Viking football team was chosen to finish first in the CIAA Eastern Division. The 2009 Predicted Order of Finish and Pre-Season All-CIAA Team was announced at the Annual CIAA Football Press Conference Thursday morning at Jones Dining Hall on the campus of Virginia State University.

The Vikings placed five on the 2009 All-CIAA Pre-Season Team; three on offense, two on defense. Tight end Karvin Gwaltney, wide receiver Dexter Manley and offensive lineman Dylan Stivers were all named to the offensive pre-season team while punter Daniel Mendez and cornerback Justin Hamilton lead the pre-season defensive squad. Gwaltney, Manley and Hamilton were all named to the 2008 All-CIAA Team at the end of the last season.

The Pre-Season All-CIAA Team and Predicted Order of Finish/Pre-Season Team is voted on annually by the CIAA Football Coaches Association. Fayetteville State University picked to un-seed the two-time defending Champion Shaw Bears at the top of the CIAA West, was selected finish first overall. The Vikings and Bears, who met in last year's championship, were picked to finish tied at second overall.

ECSU was picked to repeat as the Eastern Division Champion for 2009. Last season, the Vikings finished 7-4 overall (CIAA 7-0) and fell to the Shaw Bears in the CIAA Championship game 36-7. The predicted order of finish for the West is Fayetteville State, Shaw, Saint Augustine's, Livingstone, Chowan and Johnson C. Smith. The Vikings are picked to lead the East followed by Virginia Union, Virginia State, Bowie State and Saint Paul's.

The Vikings will kick of the season against Shaw University on August 29th, a rematch of last season's Championship Game. For more information on ECSU Athletics, visit www.ecsuvikings.com. A complete list of the overall Predicted Order of Finish follows;

Fayetteville State
*Elizabeth City State
*Shaw
St. Augustine's
Virginia Union
Virginia State
Bowie State
Saint Paul's
Livingstone
Chowan
Johnson C. Smith

*Tied for Second