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Golden Eagles Picked 5th in C-USA East Division

Rakeem Nunez-Roches

July 17, 2013

HATTIESBURG, Miss. - The 2013 Conference USA preseason football poll was announced Wednesday and the 14-league coaches have picked Southern Miss to finish fifth in the East Division.

With 11 first-place votes, East Carolina earned the No. 1 nod in the East Division ahead of Marshall, who got two first-place votes and Middle Tennessee, which received one first-place tally. UAB notched fourth place, followed by the Golden Eagles, Florida Atlantic and FIU.

Tulsa garnered a unanimous first-place finish in the West, followed by Rice, Louisiana Tech, UTEP, North Texas, Tulane and UTSA.

Southern Miss junior defensive lineman Rakeem Nunez-Roches (Phenix City, Ala.) earned the only preseason season all-league selection for the Golden Eagles. Last season, Nunez-Roches tallied a total of 37 tackles (22 solos) which included six tackles for loss, a sack, a blocked kick, a pass break up and a forced fumble.

The Golden Eagles open the season Saturday, Aug. 31, at home against Texas State. Game time is set for 6 p.m.

Season tickets are available by going online at, by calling 1-800-844-TICK (8425) or by visiting the Pat Ferlise Ticket Office weekdays from 8 a.m., until 5 p.m.

Predicted Order of Finish
East Division Points
1.East Carolina (11)95
2.Marshall (2)82
3.Middle Tennessee (1)70
5.Southern Miss40
6.Florida Atlantic28
West Division Points
1.Tulsa (14)98
3.Louisiana Tech72
5.North Texas39
(first place votes in parentheses)

Offensive Player of the Year
Rakeem Cato, Jr., QB, Marshall
Defensive Player of the Year
Phillip Gaines, Sr., DB, Rice
Special Teams Player of the Year
Cairo Santos, Sr., K, Tulane

First Team Offense
QBRakeem CatoJr.Marshall
RBVintavious CooperSr.East Carolina
RBDarrin ReavesJr.UAB
OLJake AlexanderJr.Tulsa
OLStetson BurnettSr.Tulsa
OLScott InskeepJr.UTSA
OLNate RichardsSr.Rice
OLMatt ShepperdJr.Louisiana Tech
OLWill SimmonsSr.East Carolina
WRJustin HardyJr.East Carolina
WRRyan GrantSr.Tulane
WRTommy ShulerJr.Marshall
TEGator HoskinsSr.Marshall
First Team Defense
DLChristian CovingtonSo.Rice
DLJustin EllisSr.Louisiana Tech
DLGreg HickmanSr.FIU
DLRakeem Nunez-RochesDLSouthern Miss
LBShawn JacksonSr.Tulsa
LBDerrell JohnsonSr.East Carolina
LBAndre KirkJr.Florida Atlantic
DBKevin ByardSo.Middle Tennessee
DBLorenzo DossSo.Tulane
DBPhillip GainesSr.Rice
DBMarco NelsonSr.Tulsa
First Team Special Teams
KCairo SantosKTulane
PTyler WilliamsPMarshall
KRReggie WhatleyJr.Middle Tennessee
PRTrey WattsSr.Tulsa

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