Following Mississippi Valley State's best finish under Karl Morgan, the fourth-year coach now can point to another sign that the Delta Devil program is headed in the right direction.
It was announced Monday during SWAC Football Media Day that four MVSU student-athletes were named Preseason All-SWAC.
Defensive tackle Robert Simpson and safety Kevin Eugene was tabbed First Team All-SWAC while offensive lineman Antonio Griggs and wide receiver Julian Stafford were named to the Second Team.
Simpson was an key part of an MVSU defense that ranked fourth in FCS in total defense. The Gulfport native ranked second in FCS in tackles for loss with 22.5 and fourth in the SWAC in sacks with seven. He also recorded 59 tackles (29 solo) and two fumble recoveries.
Eugene, a Miami native, ranked second in the SWAC in interceptions (4) and finished the season with 38 tackles. He also returned a fumble 100 yards for a touchdown and a 31-yard interception for a score against Texas Southern.
Griggs, of Columbus, Miss., helped block for a MVSU rushing attack that finished fifth in the SWAC with 161.2 yards per game. He was also named Third Team All-SWAC by College Sports Madness following last season.
Last season, Stafford finished with 51 receptions for 779 yards and four touchdowns. He also returned two kick returns for scores and averaged 115.9 all-purpose yards per game (2nd in SWAC). Stafford's most remarkable performance from last season came against Prairie View when the Memphis native finished with 13 catches for 159 yards and a touchdown.
The Delta Devils are slated to open the season Sept. 1 in the MEAC/SWAC Challenge Presented by Disney against Florida A&M. The game is slated to kick off at 11:45 EST on ESPN.