KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Evangel football team earned national recognition Monday receiving votes in the latest NAIA Coaches' Top 25.
The Crusaders were one of six teams receiving votes in the NAIA Top 25 after earning six votes from the raters. Evangel improved to 5-3 on the season and 2-0 in the Heart of America Athletic Conference after a 31-29 victory over MidAmerica Nazarene on Saturday.
Five teams from the Heart are being recognized including Baker who sits at No. 2 and is 8-0 on the season. Two of the Crusaders' losses are also to teams in the top 25, No. 6 Grand View and No. 12 Benedictine – as each team sits 7-1 with its only loss to Baker.
Peru State also joined the Crusaders in the receiving votes category as they are also 5-3 on the season.
The last time Evangel has cracked the top 25 was the 2014 season when the Crusaders spent one week at No. 25 before falling out after week six.
Evangel hosts Missouri Valley Saturday at Tiger Stadium in Ozark. Both the Crusaders and Vikings sit at 2-0 in the Heart South Division standings. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:30 p.m.
• The poll was voted upon by a panel of head coaches representing each of the conferences.
• Each conference is given one rater for every four schools in the league.
• The Top 25 is determined by a points system based on how each voter ranks the best teams. A team receives 25 points for each first-place vote, 24 for second-place and so on through the list.
• The highest and lowest ranking for each team (a non-rating is considered a low rating) is removed, and the team's ranking will be recalculated with an additional point added to each team for every ballot (including discounted ballots) that the teams appear on.
• Teams that receive only one point in the ballot are not considered "receiving votes."
• For the complete Top 25 calendar, click here.
Top 25 Highlights (historical information dates back to 1999)
• Saint Francis boasts the No. 1 ranking for the 13th time in program history, which is the sixth-most top billings dating back to 1999.
• The Cougars improved to 8-0 on the season and extended their winning streak to 17-straight games with a 56-23 victory over Missouri Baptist. Saint Francis rests atop the Mid-States Football Association Mideast standings at 4-0 with two games remaining on its regular-season schedule
• Saint Francis hosts Lindenwood-Belleville (Ill.) on Saturday.
• There was no movement in the top 12 this week.
• No. 25 Dakota State (S.D.) is the lone newcomer this edition. The Trojans are 6-2 on the season and have a key showdown with No. 15 Dickinson State (N.D.) on Saturday. Prior to today, Dakota State was most recently ranked on October 24, 2016.
• Carroll (Mont.) owns the most No. 1 rankings with 58, followed by former NAIA member Sioux Falls (S.D.) (55), No. 9 Georgetown (25), No. 4 Morningside (Iowa) (20), No. 10 Saint Xavier (Ill.) (14) and Saint Francis (13).
• Morningside holds the longest active streak with 133-straight Top 25 mentions. Additionally, the Mustangs have been ranked within the top 10 in 82-straight polls.
For the latest information on Evangel Athletics, follow the Crusaders on Facebook at Facebook.com/EvangelAthletics or go to www.EvangelAthletics.com. Fans can also receive updates on the team by downloading the Go Evangel Front Row App at EvangelAthletics.com/FrontRow available on Google Play and in the App Store.