HERO Sports welcomes you to "Two-a-Days", where we will preview every single one of the 125 FCS programs, with two being released each day from June 18 to August 18 (with the final day having three in one day). Today we give you … Saint Francis.
Saint Francis (5-6 IN 2017)
Northeast Conference (Saint Francis was 4th in 2017)
COACH: Chris Villarrial – 9th year (36-52)
2017 OFFENSE: 21.9 ppg (72nd in FCS)
2017 DEFENSE: 14.6 ppg (5th in FCS)
SUM IT UP: Saint Francis shouldn't be considered the favorite to win the NEC, but the Red Flash aren't exactly a non-factor, either. Only two years removed from Villarrial's breakthrough championship season, SFU should wield a steady, balanced offense behind an extremely good offensive line, with graduate transfer quarterback Bear Fenimore calling the shots in his final year of eligibility. Defensively, Saint Francis is unlikely to be as great as it was in 2017, but the unit will still be good enough to completely disrupt many of the NEC's less-talented teams. With non-conference games with Richmond, Albany and Lehigh, we should have a pretty good idea of how good the Red Flash are before they open NEC play at Wagner in mid-October. Either way, SFU has notched a top-four finish in the NEC over each of the last six seasons, so the floor is pretty high.
BEST-CASE SCENARIO: Saint Francis runs the table after September and wins the NEC. The Red Flash have a wildly favorable conference schedule, with Bryant, Duquesne and Central Connecticut State all coming to Loretto. Saint Francis should take care of business against the bottom of the NEC on the road, so if they can hold serve at home, Villarrial should find his boys back in the playoffs for the second time in three years.
TOP RETURNEE: WR Kamron Lewis (All-American, 2,494 Career Receiving Yards).
THE NEXT FIVE: OL Mederick Flavius (Second-Team All-NEC, 33 Career Starts); LB Sean Orsini (25 Career Starts, Team-Leading 84 Tackles in '17); OL Mike Ames (Second-Team All-NEC, 22 Career Starts); QB Bear Fenimore (Houston Graduate Transfer, Passed for 1,893 Yards and 14 TD's in '17); DB Hakeem Kinard (73 Tackles, 6.5 TFL's, 2 INT's in '17).
TOP NEWCOMER: OL Alec Shriner (West Virginia Transfer, former 3-Star Recruit).
DID YOU KNOW?: Somewhat unsurprisingly, Saint Francis was the first Franciscan college in the United States.
THE QUOTE: “He didn’t like being beat. If he did get beat, he’d be the first one in the film room asking the coaches why this happened. He was always rallying the troops. He was a student of the game. He’d study the game. You saw so many things in him. He never got flustered that he could not respond back.” -Saint Francis Coach Chris Villarrial, on Seattle Seahawks signee and Red Flash alum Lorenzo Jerome
SOCIAL MEDIA SPOTLIGHT
THE HASHTAG: #AlphasOnly
FOOTBALL TWITTER: @RedFlashFB
— NFL Draft Bible (@NFLDraftBible) August 8, 2018