Division I-AA '98 '98 Returning
Record Rank* Starters

1 Georgia Southern 14-1 2 13
Speedy sophomore running back Adrian Peterson rushed for 2,606
yards and scored 34 touchdowns

2 UMass 12-3 1 16
All-America Marcel Shipp (2,542 yards, 18 TDs in '98) has
rushed for 100+ yards in 12 straight games

3 McNeese State 9-3 8 16
Cowboys were third in the nation in total defense (227.1
yards per game) and fourth in scoring D (12.4)

4 Illinois State 8-4 16 20
Junior quarterback Kevin Glenn leads a puissant attack that
averaged 439.5 yards and 36.1 points

5 Jackson State 7-4 -- 19
Nine starters return on an offense that led the SWAC in
scoring and virtually every other major category

6 Hampton 9-3 11 15
All-America linebacker Deon Hunt had 113 tackles, two
interceptions and two fumble recoveries

7 Northwestern State 11-3 3 11
Eight starters are back on an offense that averaged 32.3
points, but the defense lost eight starters

8 Southern 8-3 16 7
Jaguars will lean on their defense, especially senior
linebacker Channing Warner, who made 85 tackles

9 Troy State 8-4 13 16
Al Lucas, a 6'3", 280-pound defensive tackle, doubles as the
Trojans' fullback in goal line situations

10 Montana 8-4 -- 19
Grizzlies have rugged linebackers in Adam Boomer (103
tackles in '98) and Marcus Wilson (68 tackles)

11 Tennessee State 9-3 12 17
Leon Murray (3,002 yards passing, 22 TDs last fall) leads an
offense that averaged 467.2 yards

12 Richmond 9-3 10 15
Spiders had the best defense in the Atlantic 10, holding
opponents to 13.7 points per game

13 Appalachian State 10-3 6 13
First and foremost: Mountaineers outscored opponents 114-13
in the opening quarter last season

14 Delaware 7-4 23 15
Matt Nagy is coming off a career year in passing (2,916
yards), but leading receiver Eddie Conti graduated

15 Florida A&M 11-2 5 12
With Jacquay Nunnally (109 receptions in '98) back, the
Rattlers could lead I-AA in total offense again

16 Arkansas Pine Bluff 8-3 -- 14
Running back Ron Johnson, a transfer from Arkansas, should
strengthen an already solid backfield

17 Northern Iowa 7-4 -- 14
All-America receiver Mike Furrey gave opponents fits,
catching a team-high 82 passes for 1,291 yards

18 Connecticut 10-3 9 11
Huskies won't have any problems scoring but must improve a
defense that gave up 468.2 yards per game

19 Bethune-Cookman 8-3 18 16
Coach Alvin Wyatt's offense, running a takeoff on the
wishbone named the Wyattbone, was No. 12 in rushing

20 Hofstra 8-3 20 16
Flying Dutchmen, led by QB Giovanni Carmazzi and running
back Vaughn Sanders, averaged 38.7 points

21 Youngstown State 6-5 -- 14
Hard-hitting free safety Dwyte Smiley led the Penguins with
123 tackles and had two interceptions

22 South Florida 8-3 22 21
Raging Bulls defense, led by junior linebacker Jason Butler,
was 11th in the nation in total D (281.9 yards)

23 Montana State 7-4 25 12
Safety Shon Flores led the Bobcats with 114 tackles and had
two interceptions and two fumble recoveries

24 Lehigh 12-1 7 13
Mountain Hawks, coming off their best season, will rely on
Phil Stambaugh (3,121 yards passing, 22 TDs)

25 Colgate 8-4 21 16
Quarterback Ryan Vena, 14-2 as a starter, anchors a unit
that averaged 477.5 yards in total offense

*In the Sports Network Division I-AA Top 25

Division II '98 '98 Returning
Record Rank* Starters

1 Carson-Newman (Tenn.) 12-2 2 15
Free safety Montrae Ford had a team-high seven interceptions
in '98

2 Northern Colorado 11-2 5 12
Corte McGuffey, who completed 63.2% of his passes last fall,
is the best QB in Division II

3 Northwest Missouri State 14-0 1 15
The defending champs have holes on offense, but six of the
front seven are back on defense

4 Texas A&M Kingsville 11-3 3 12
Terrance Bennett averaged 7.1 yards running behind
All-America guard Cliff Clemons and Co.

5 Central Oklahoma 12-1 4 14
The Bronchos have a bull in RB Reggie Donner, who rushed for
1,546 yards and 19 TDs in '98

6 Slippery Rock (Pa.) 12-2 7 14
Quarterback Randy McKavish has amassed 5,066 yards of total
offense in two years

7 West Georgia 10-2 14 13
The Braves are led by sack kings Vinson Cooper (8 in '98),
Pat Brown (7) and Courtney Roebuck (7)

8 UC Davis 10-2 9 12
With three All-Americas the Aggies will roll to their 30th
consecutive winning season

9 Nebraska Omaha 9-3 10 13
The Mavericks' backfield will be well protected with a line
that averages 6'4", 313 pounds

10 Saginaw Valley State (Mich.) 9-2 21 16
Division II leader in rushing is shifting to a pass-oriented
attack under new coach Randy Awrey

11 Albany State (Ga.) 9-2 24 18
Golden Rams running back Robert Cummings amassed 1,345 total
yards last season

12 Shepherd (W.Va.) 10-2 8 15
Damian Beane is 2,235 yards short of Brian Shay's
all-divisions career rushing record (6,958)

13 Indiana (Pa.) 10-2 12 10
Backs Terrance Wilson and Tink Stennett combined for 1,797
yards and 16 touchdowns in '98

14 North Alabama 8-2 6 13
The Lions roared for 363 yards per game last season but must
replace the starting backfield

15 Pittsburg State (Kans.) 7-3 23 11
Gorillas' new quarterback, Lateef Walker, scored four
touchdowns as a running back last year

16 New Haven 5-5 -- 12
The Chargers lost their five games last season by a total of
17 points

17 Millersville (Pa.) 8-2 17 14
Marauders magician: Drew Folmar threw for 3,039 yards and 30
touchdowns last fall

18 Tuskegee (Ala.) 10-2 18 12
5'7" Michael Scott (1,254 yards) and 5'6" Severon Zachary
make up a little but feisty backfield

19 Chadron State (Neb.) 9-2 11 14
The starting running backs (5.4 yards per carry) return, but
the Eagles must replace their QB

20 Southern Arkansas 8-2 16 15
Expect the Muleriders to rotate Adam Pendergrass and Tim
Barrington at quarterback

21 Winona State (Minn.) 9-2 -- 13
5'7", 170-pound running back-kick returner Carson Walch is a
threat to score on every carry

22 Delta State (Miss.) 8-3 15 10
Statesmen RBs Casey Macke (1,111 yards, eight TDs) and
Tregnel Thomas make a formidable duo

23 North Dakota 8-3 19 11
Running back Chad Faul (9.6 yards per carry last fall) is
ready to shoulder the load

24 Bentley (Mass.) 8-2 -- 11
WR Mark DeBrito, tailback Matt Rapoza and QB Ted Larkin
scored 27 of the Falcons' 36 TDs in '98

25 Southern Connecticut 8-2 -- 17
Senior Rashaan Dumas (4,085 career yards, 55 TDs) is one of
the nation's premier tailbacks

Division III '98 '98 Returning
Record Rank* Starters

1 Mount Union (Ohio) 14-0 1 12
The three-time defending champ is led by Gary Smeck (2,717
yards passing, 23 TDs in '98)

2 Trinity (Texas) 12-1 2 20
Marvelous Michael Burton, 28-1 as a starter, threw for 3,031
yards and 32 TDs a year ago

3 Lycoming (Pa.) 10-1 6 15
The Warriors' secondary is in good hands with John Scanlan,
who had five interceptions last fall

4 College of New Jersey 8-3 20 13
State supremacy is on the line on Oct. 2 against Rowan, which
beat the Lions in the '98 playoffs

5 St. John's (Minn.) 11-1 9 11
Linebacker Brandon Novak (130 tackles) anchors a unit that
led the division in total defense

6 Albion (Mich.) 8-2 10 10
The Britons are the winningest football program in Michigan
this decade: 84-13-2

7 John Carroll (Ohio) 8-2 13 14
Blue Streaks LBs Brian Zielaskiewicz and John Pellegrini are
among the division's best

8 Western Maryland 10-1 8 15
The Green Terror never trailed in the '98 regular season and
tied for first in turnover ratio (+23)

9 Catholic (Washington, D.C.) 10-1 16 13
Despite missing part of his throwing hand's ring finger,
Derek McGee passed for 1,732 yards

10 Rowan (N.J.) 9-3 4 13
Profs will get the ball to wideout Taman Bryant, who
averaged 16.7 yards per catch last fall

11 Pacific Lutheran (Wash.) 8-2 21 16
Chad Johnson (1,621 yards passing, 12 TDs in '98) is the
grandson of coach Frosty Westering

12 Allegheny (Pa.) 8-2 -- 13
The Gators' defense (14.3 points per game) is led by LB
Corey Belaney (120 tackles, 7 1/2 sacks)

13 Millikin (Ill.) 8-2 17 13
Jerome Jackson is the main receiver after catching 56 passes
for 695 yards and four TDs in '98

14 Wisconsin-River Falls 7-3 24 17
Michael Grant, Taylor Hall, Ryan Lins and Nick Scribner
rushed for more than 500 yards each

15 Emory & Henry (Va.) 10-0 7 12
The Wasps sting at home, where they have the nation's
longest winning streak at 37

16 Hardin-Simmons (Texas) 9-1 15 10
QB Brad Boyd favored to lead an offense that averaged 519.3
yards and 44.9 points in '98

17 Ohio Northern 7-3 25 15
The Polar Bears' offense is paced by tight end-H-back Steve
Vagedes (1,220 yards, 20 TDs)

18 Widener (Pa.) 8-3 23 10
6'1", 300-pound tackle Stanley LaFontant helped the Pioneers
lead Division III in rushing D (31.4 ypg)

19 Baldwin-Wallace (Ohio) 8-2 12 8
LBs Brian Dever (78 tackles) and Scott Barwidi (66 tackles,
five sacks) are swarming Jackets

20 Central College (Iowa) 10-1 11 8
Linebacker Jeff Sanger and Co. are seeking the Dutch's 39th
consecutive winning season

21 Buffalo State 9-3 18 14
Bengals' tailbacks Dion Foendoe and Shawn Starks combined
for 1,676 yards and 20 TDs in '98

22 Wartburg (Iowa) 9-1 22 11
Last season Matt Wheeler threw for 2,150 yards and 23 TDs,
eight to wideout Ryan Rausch

23 Wittenberg (Ohio) 11-1 3 12
The Tigers lost seven starters from a D that led the nation
in fewest points allowed (5.3 per game)

24 Grinnell (Iowa) 10-0 -- 13
Troy Dougherty had the best passing efficiency rating
(199.60) of any QB at any level in '98

25 Williams (Mass.) 8-0 -- 13
Sean Keenan's 1,780 passing yards and 122 completions are
records for the Ephs

*In Don Hansen's National Weekly Football Gazette's Top 25 for
Divisions II and III

COLOR PHOTO: KARIM SHAMSI-BASHA Georgia Southern couldn't stop UMass in last year's title game but should rule in '99.