PERKINSTON — Mississippi Gulf Coast will open the 2021 football season ranked seventh in the country. The NJCAA Division I preseason poll was released Monday.
Hutchinson is atop the poll after receiving all five first-place votes. Snow College is next, followed by Northwest Mississippi. The Rangers are the only MACCC team above the Bulldogs. Hinds is ranked 13th in the 15-team list.
The NJCAA split football into two divisions this year, with Division III including schools that don’t award scholarships.
Gulf Coast, which opens the season Thursday at Holmes, has appeared in the last 18 polls for which it was eligible, dating back to 2018. The Bulldogs were first in the final poll of 2019 after winning the NJCAA championship. The MACCC played in fall 2020, making the league ineligible for NJCAA rankings since the rest of the country played in the spring.
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