FREELAND, Mich. – Defending champion Adrian College claimed the role of preseason favorite by topping the 2015 Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) preseason football coaches’ poll.
The Bulldogs swept the majority of first-place votes towards a total of nine points to earn the top spot heading into the fall season. Adrian finished atop the 2014 standings with a 5-1 ledger in conference play and an 8-3 overall mark. The Bulldogs dropped their first round playoff match at eventual national finalist, Mount Union, to end their campaign.
The Bulldogs have captured the MIAA in two of the last three years including an impressive stretch run last year towards the title. Adrian dropped their conference opener and then reeled off five straight league wins. After a narrow 27-19 win against Hope on Nov. 1, the Bulldogs won their final two games on the road in convincing fashion over Kalamazoo (35-7) and Trine (40-7).
Sophomore Emmanuel Stewart returns after rushing for 1,002 yards in his rookie campaign. He averaged 6.1 yards per carry and scored 11 times on the ground. His total yardage ranked fifth in a single-season at Adrian and his rushing scores tied for seventh. He also set a school record with 281 rushing yards against Albion on Oct. 18 in a 47-26 win. Sophomore Damon Fuller is the team's leading returning tackler having made 58 stops including 31 solo on the defensive line. Fuller led the team with 19.5 tackles for loss including 12 sacks for a loss of 83 yards. He also forced and recovered two fumbles.