The University of Toledo football team was picked to finish first in the Mid-American Conference’s West Division in voting performed by 17 members of the league’s media contingent. The annual preseason poll was released yesterday at the conference’s 2012 football media day held at Ford Field in Detroit.
The Rockets received seven first-place votes and a total of 87 points in the annual poll to edge Northern Illinois (83 points) and Western Michigan (79). Ball State (42), Eastern Michigan (34) and Central Michigan (32) rounded out the voting.
Toledo also received three votes to win the annual Marathon MAC Football Championship Game between the winners of the West and East divisions. Ohio, which was picked to repeat as East Division champs, received five votes to win it all.
Head Coach Matt Campbell said the vote of confidence for the Rockets is an indication of the progress of the Toledo program.
“It says a lot about our program,” said Campbell, who is entering his first full season as UT’s head coach. “But it’s just a preseason poll. Obviously, we hope to be there at the end of November.”
Toledo is coming off a 9-4 season in 2011 (7-1 MAC), including a 42-41 victory over Air Force in the Military Bowl. The Rockets return three All-MAC players, along with quarterbacks Austin Dantin and Terrance Owens, and junior wide receiver Bernard Reedy, the 2011 Military Bowl MVP.
The Rockets report to training camp on Thursday, Aug. 2, with the first practice coming a day later.