Parker earns KCAC Defensive Player of the Week honors, Coyotes up to No. 16

Kansas Wesleyan’s Cole Parker (JR/Orland, Calif.) has been selected as the KCAC Football Defensive Player of the Week for his efforts in KWU’s 31-7 win over Sterling on Saturday at Bissell Field.

The KCAC Player of the Week program is nominated and voted upon by conference sports information directors.

Parker stepped up big for the Coyotes in the home opener. He recorded four tackles, two of them for sacks as the Coyotes won 31-7 over Sterling. He was a huge part of helping KWU hold Sterling to only 189 yards of total offense in the game, and seven points.

The NAIA National Office released the first FirstDown Playbook NAIA Football Top 25 Coaches Poll on Monday afternoon and the Coyotes were the biggest upward-mover in the poll, going up eight spots to the No. 16 spot after being ranked No. 24 in the preseason poll.

The Coyotes are tied with Roosevelt (Ill.) in the poll.

Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) is the unanimous favorite in the first poll of the season, earning 418 points and all 18 first-place votes. Northwestern is No. 2, Morningside is No. 3, Grand View is No. 4 and Concordia (Mich.) is No. 5 in the poll.

The KCAC has four ranked teams, led by No. 10 Bethel, Avila is No. 15, KWU is tied for 16th, and Southwestern is ranked No. 20.

KWU heads to North Newton on Saturday to face Bethel at 6 p.m. at Thresher Stadium.