PHILADELPHIA - Brian Barbato (Exeter, N.H.) and Josh Polgar (Rutland, Vt.) of the University of New Hampshire football team were voted to the Atlantic 10 Preseason All-Conference Second Team, the conference announced at Thursday's annual Football Media Day event.
Barbato, a senior offensive guard, was an Atlantic 10 Third Team selection following the 2002 season. Following a redshirt season in 1999, Barbato stepped into a starting role as a left guard in 2000 and shifted to right guard as a sophomore the following season. Barbato is projected as the starting left guard on UNH's 2003 preseason depth chart.
Polgar, a senior punter who was named to the Atlantic 10 Academic All-Conference Team a year ago, is coming off a record-setting 2002 season in which he broke the UNH record for punting average - and led the Atlantic 10 - with a mark of 42.1 yards per punt. He recorded a career-long 69-yard punt against Delaware and also had an impressive punt of 59 yards vs. Villanova.
New Hampshire was selected 10th in the Atlantic 10 preseason poll, which was also released Thursday. The Wildcats open the 2003 season Aug. 30 at home against Central Connecticut State University. Game time at Cowell Stadium is 3 p.m.
The preseason poll is headed by Northeastern University, which garnered nine first-place votes. The University of Delaware (eight first-place votes), University of Massachusetts (eight), University of Maine (four) and Villanova University complete the top five spots. VU is followed by Hofstra University (one), College of William & Mary, James Madison University, University of Richmond, UNH and University of Rhode Island.
The Atlantic 10 Football Conference also unveiled its 2003 television schedule. New Hampshire will be featured as the conference game of the week Oct. 11, when the Wildcats play host to Delaware. The contest will be televised by The Football Network, which will become a 24-hour, seven-day-a-week national cable network this fall.