Pikeville-Cumberlands football game moved to a Thursday

Times Staff Report

September 18, 2013

PIKEVILLE - The lights will shine once again at the W.C. Hambley Athletics Complex as the football game between the University of Pikeville and University of the Cumberlands (Ky.) has been moved to a 7 p.m. kickoff on Thursday, Sept. 26 in Pikeville.

The game was originally scheduled for 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 28.

“The move assures us that our students will have a better chance to attend the game before weekend travel,” said Pikeville athletic director Reggie Overton. “It also helps capture a captive audience from our various media outlets and, at this time of year, hopefully gives us better weather.”

It will be the third night game for UPIKE after opening the season at 7 p.m. at Morehead State and hosting Bluefield the following Thursday at the same time.

Cumberlands, which has a bye this week, is off to a 3-0 start and is ranked eighth in the NAIA Coaches’ Top-25 poll. UPIKE is 3-0 as well and returns to action at Lindsey Wilson in Columbia on Saturday.

Bears ranked 25th: Morningside (Iowa) remains atop the NAIA Football Coaches’ Top 25 in the first regular-season poll, the national office announced Monday. The Mustangs, who began the season ranked No. 1 after a national runner-up finish in 2012, are 2-0 on the season with wins over Valley City State (N.D.) and Nebraska Wesleyan, who both received votes in the preseason poll. Morningside tallied 314 points and all 14 first place votes en route to its second No. 1 ranking in school history.

Saint Francis (Ind.) compiled 301 points to earn the No. 2 ranking. The Cougars, who were ranked No. 5 in the preseason poll after finishing as a national semifinalist in 2012, are 1-0 this year, having defeated preseason No. 16 William Penn, 31-13.

With 282 points, Cumberlands (Ky.) landed the No. 3 ranking. The Patriots, who lead the NAIA in total rushing offense, have compiled over 1000 rushing yards (1119) in the first three games of the season—victories over preseason No. 21 Belhaven (Miss.), No. 25 Cumberland (Tenn.) and unranked Union (Ky.). Cumberlands, which has defeated its opponents by an average of 28.6 points, is ranked among the top five teams for the first time since Oct. 31, 2005.

Carroll (Mont.) and Saint Xavier (Ill.) round out the top five with 272 and 255 points, respectively. The height of the Fighting Saints season, thus far, came when they stunned preseason No. 7 Montana Tech 21-7. The victory capped Carroll’s homecoming weekend with the school’s first win over a Top 25 opponent in 2013. The Cougars, a 2012 national semifinalist, remain among the top five teams nationally despite a 51-20 loss to NCAA DII University of Indianapolis (Ind.).

The Heart of America Athletic Conference, Mid-States Football Association Mideast, Mid-States Football Association Midwest and Mid-South Conference East each placed four teams among the Top 25 to lead the NAIA.

There were six newcomers to the Top 25: three who received votes in the preseason poll and three who were unranked. No. 17 St. Francis (Ill.), No. 19 Rocky Mountain (Mont.) and No. 22 Robert Morris (Ill.) moved from the receiving votes category into the Top 25. No. 23 Faulkner (Ala.), No. 24 Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) and No. 25 Pikeville (Ky.) jumped from unranked directly into the Top 25.

This is the first Top 25 appearance for Pikeville since Jan. 18, 2005. The Bears are 3-0 this season, including a 13-10 win over NCAA DI FCS Morehead State (Ky.). All other newcomers were ranked in multiple polls last season.

Preseason No. 9 Bethel (Tenn.), No. 14 Southern Oregon, No. 21 Belhaven (Miss.), No. 22 Evangel (Mo.) No. 23 Langston (Okla.) and No. 25 Cumberland (Tenn.) fell out of the Top 25. Among these teams, only Belhaven, who defeated unranked Texas College, 36-26, has recorded a win this season.

Within the poll, No. 9 Grand View (Iowa) and No. 14 Benedictine (Kan.) made the biggest jump, each moving up 10 spots, while defending national champion Marian (Ind.) fell 14 spots, landing at No. 16.

The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences and Independents.

The second regular-season Top 25 Poll will be announced Sept. 23.