ABILENE - The ACU
Wildcats finished the 2011 football season ranked No. 16 in the
country, according to the final American Football Coaches' Association
top 25 poll, which was released Monday afternoon.
(Kan.) - which won its first national championship since 1991 last
Saturday with a 35-21 win over Wayne State (Mich.) - finished the season
ranked No. 1 after posting a 13-1 record. The
Warriors of Wayne State finished No. 2 after a 12-4 campaign.
State (N.C.) finished No. 3 after posting a 13-1 record, while Delta
State (Miss.) was No. 4 and Northwest Missouri State No. 5.
Conference champion Midwestern State finished seventh in the poll after
posting a 10-1 season. Washburn - which knocked off ACU, 52-49, in the
first round of the NCAA Division II playoffs - finished
No. 11 in the AFCA poll.
ACU - one of only
four programs in the country to qualify for the NCAA Division II
playoffs in each of the last six seasons - finished the regular season
at 8-2 before the loss to Washburn capped head coach
Chris Thomsen's seventh and final season at ACU at 8-3.
his resignation last Friday so that he could join the coaching staff at
Arizona State as the offensive backs coach.
The only other
LSC team to finish in the top 25 was West Texas A&M, which finished
No. 25 after its 26-7 win over Central Missouri in the Lower Kanza Bowl
pushed the Buffaloes' final record to 8-3.