Monday, November 17, 2008

Shorter College Hawks Football Secures Playoff Spot Nov. 22

All along, the odds were against them. But today, the Shorter College Hawks football team has been given a reason to celebrate, as their season will continue on to next week with a berth in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics' (NAIA) National Football Championship playoffs.

When the national poll was released on Sunday morning, Shorter had jumped seven spots to No. 12 - the highest ranked team in the Mid-South Western Division and good for the conference's automatic playoff berth. The Hawks will travel to another Mid-South school for their first playoff game in history on Sat. Nov. 22 at 12 p.m. - the No. 8-ranked and Mid-South Eastern Division champions, the University of the Cumberlands in Williamsburg, Ky.

"It's hard to know where to start," said Shorter head coach Phil Jones. " It's extremely exciting for us. The initial response is gratefulness to the Lord, as we seek to glorify him in everything we do. We're grateful for Shorter College, President [Harold] Newman, the staff, the students, the faculty - everyone.

"These coaches have meshed their lives with this program and given so much," he added. "We're excited to go from this moment into these national playoffs."

On Saturday, the Hawks also received a share of the Mid-South Conference Western Division title with a win over Bethel College, 7-0.

The match-up with the University of the Cumberlands will be the third meeting between the two teams, having last played on Sept. 23, 2006 - a game the Hawks won 27-7.

The Mid-South Conference has four member schools making the playoffs: Shorter, Union College, University of the Cumberlands (Ky.), and Lambuth University.

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