Lindy's Sports recently released its 2011 preseason football rankings and preseason All-America teams. Pittsburg State was listed in the top 25, as well as having representatives on the All-America teams.
2010 All-American Nate Dreiling was named a Lindy's first-team All-American on defense. He was also chosen as the magazine's Defensive Player of the Year. Dreiling, a Hutchinson, Kan., native, led Division II in 2010 in total tackles, averaging 13.33 per game. He made 160 tackles on the year including 20.5 tackles-for-loss. Dreiling logged double-digit tackles in each of his final 11 games, including 16 stops in the Mineral Water Bowl to claim the national statistical lead in tackles.
Defensive back Chas Smith, a Pittsburg native, was named a second-team preseason defensive All-American.
Pitt State was ranked 24th in the Division II preseason top 25. The Gorillas are one of three MIAA listed in the top 25 with Northwest Missouri in fifth and Central Missouri ranked No. 18.
The Gorillas open the 2011 season against Missouri Western on September 1 at 6 p.m. in St. Joseph, Mo.