RICHMOND, Va. (August 16, 2010) -- For the third-straight season CAA Football will kickoff the year with four squads ranked among the nation’s Top 10.  The league, which has claimed each of the last two Division I National Championships, has a total of six teams ranked in the preseason version of The Sports Network/Fathead.com FCS Top 25, released Monday afternoon.

Reigning National Champion Villanova, which was also picked to repeat as CAA Football Champions, garnered 104 of the poll’s 126 first-place votes to run away with the No. 1 spot.  The Wildcats are slated to kickoff the 2010 season, Sept. 3, against Temple on ESPN3.com at 5 p.m.

William and Mary, which returns six starters to a defense which ranked among the Top-3 nationally last season, is third in the poll after logging 2,631 points and three first-place votes.  Richmond, which will open the season, Sept. 4, at Virginia on ESPN3.com at 6 p.m., garnered one first-place vote and 2,317 points to come in at No. 6 in preseason poll.  New Hampshire, picked to finish third in the league’s preseason poll, comes in at No. 10 in The Sports Network Poll after logging 1,837 points.

James Madison, winners of four-straight to close to the 2009 season, will begin 2010 at No. 15 after earning 1,237 points in the preseason rankings.  Delaware, which returns as many as 17 starters from 2009, is No. 16 on the preseason Top 25.  Maine and Massachusetts each logged votes in the preseason polling, but finished outside the initial Top 25.

The league’s four squads among the Top 10 each extend individual program streaks as Richmond has now been ranked 10th-or-better 35-straight weeks.  Villanova has not fallen out of the Top 10 in 24-straight weeks, William and Mary has been above the 10th-spot 14-straight weeks and New Hampshire has been among the Top 10 three-straight weeks.

CAA Football makes up four of the Top 10, while both the Southern (Appalachian State and Elon) and Missouri Valley (Southern Illinois and South Dakota State) Conferences boast two in the Top 10.  The Big Sky is represented in the Top 10 by Montana while Stephen F. Austin gives the Southland Conference representation in the group of 10.

The league has now had at least three teams ranked every week since The Sports Network’s poll began and two teams among the  poll’s Top 10 in 70-straight weeks.

CAA Football’s 2010 regular season is set to kick off Sept. 2 with four non-conference contests as Delaware, Maine, Rhode Island and Towson will all be in action.  The first CAA Football league contest is later that same weekend when Massachusetts hosts William and Mary at 3:30 p.m., Sept. 4 on The Comcast Network and Comcast SportsNet New England.

CAA Football is blogging at caafootballblog.com...be sure to checkout the official blog of CAA Football to find all sorts of information that might not be at CAASports.com.  CAA Football is also on Twitter...Fans from all 10 schools can get up-to-date information by following the league at twitter.com/The_CAAFootball.  CAA Football will tweet throughout this offseason and continue into the 2010 fall season.  The league is also active in the new media area and encourages fans to visit us on YouTube:  youtube.com/CAAFootball.  Logon now and subscribe to see the latest video productions from CAA Football.

Team (First-place votes) Record Points Previous
1. Villanova (104) 14-1 3112 1
2. Montana (9) 14-1 2899 2
3. Appalachian State (8) 11-3 2857 3
4. William and Mary (3) 11-3 2631 4
5. Southern Illinois (1) 11-2 2569 6
6. Richmond (1) 11-2 2317 5
7. Elon 9-3 2243 9
8. Stephen F. Austin 10-3 2041 10
9. South Dakota State 8-4 1863 11
10. New Hampshire 10-3 1837 7
11. South Carolina State 10-2 1607 8
12. McNeese State 9-3 1475 12
13. Eastern Washington 8-4 1422 3
14. Northern Iowa 7-4 1269 18
15. James Madison 6-5 1237 NR
16. Delaware 6-5 879 NR
17. Jacksonville State 8-3 833 16
18. Eastern Illinois 8-4 762 19
19. Weber State 7-5 716 17
20. Prairie View A&M 9-1 709 15
21. Liberty 8-3 633 22
22. Colgate 9-2 608 21
23. Penn 8-2 593 20
24. Montana State 7-4 584 NR
25. Holy Cross 9-3 560

14

Others receiving votes: Illinois State 488, Wofford 311, Northern Arizona 286, Cal Poly 239, Furman 229, Texas State 206, Florida A&M 153, Lafayette 98, Maine 88, Harvard 85, Eastern Kentucky 81, UC Davis 61, Samford 61, Massachusetts 45, Southeastern Louisiana 45, Alabama A&M 45, Missouri State 40, Central Arkansas 39, Norfolk State 28, Lehigh 27, Old Dominion 25, Grambling State 24, Davidson 23, Georgia Southern 22, Princeton 21, Dayton 20, Portland State 18, Chattanooga 17, Youngstown State 15, Idaho State 15, Southern utah 14, Northwestern State 12, Indiana State 12, Stony Brook 12, Hampton 12, Gardner-Webb 11, Tennessee Tech 9, Robert Morris 9, North Dakota 8, Southern 8, Central Connecticut State 7, Morgan State 7, Jackson State 7, North Carolina A&T 6, VMI 5, North Dakota State 5, Austin Peay 4, Butler 4, Alcorn State 3, Jacksonville 2, Texas Southern 2, Brown 2, Howard 2, Cornell 1, Coastal Carolina 1.