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Courtesy: Monmouth University Photo


Courtesy: Monmouth Sports Information
Release: August 03, 2011
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WEST LONG BRANCH, N.J.-   Monmouth Unviersity's football team was chosen sixth in the 2011 Northeast Conference Preseason Coaches Poll, while fifth-year senior Jose Gumbs (Queens, N.Y./Hebron Academy) and redshirt junior Dino Molina (Gaithersburg, Md./Damascus) were named to the Preseason All-NEC teams.

Defending Co-Champion Central Connecticut State was chosen to repeat, earning five first place votes.  Duquesne was second with two first place votes, defending co-champion Robert Morris third, with Albany, Bryant (1) coming in ahead of the Hawks.  Wagner, Sacred Heart and Saint Francis rounded out the nine-team poll.

The sixth place preseason ranking is the lowest the Hawks have been picked since the 2003 season when the coaches chose Monmouth seventh.  That year, MU finished with a 10-1 record and won a share of the Northeast Conference Championship. 

Gumbs, a former NEC Defensive Player of the Year and two-time All-NEC selection, has garnered numerous Preseason All-America honors this summer.  The safety has led the Hawks in tackles in each of the last three seasons and currently ranks ninth all-time in career stops.  The former NEC Defensive Rookie of the Year is also an impact player on a number of MU's special teams, finishing last season with a blocked punt and a forced fumble.

Molina is a two-year returning starter at right tackle for the Hawks.  The 6-4, 305 lbs. redshirt junior missed the final five games of the 2011 season with an illness.  Prior to that Molina had appeared in 17 consecutive games, starting 10 straight.  Monmouth has had at least one offensive lineman earn First Team All-NEC honors for seven straight seasons, dating back to the 2003 season.

Monmouth's first day of practice is Sunday, August 7th with the 2011 opener coming against the Patriot League defending champion Lehigh Mountain Hawks on Sept. 3 on Kessler Field.

The entire audio archive for the teleconference will be available on later today.

2011 Northeast Conference Preseason Coaches Poll

1. Central Connecticut (5)

2. Duquesne (2)

3. Robert Morris (1)

4. Albany

5. Bryant (1)

6. Monmouth

7. Wagner

8. Sacred Heart

9. Saint Francis (PA)
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