The St. Cloud State football team begins the 2011 season Thurdsay night at #12 California, Pennsylvania.  The Huskies are ranked #13 in the lastest NABC Division II poll but fellow NSIC team Minnesota-Duluth is ranked #1 in that poll.  UMD beat St. Cloud State in the 2nd round of the NCAA Division II tournament last season but the Huskies exceeded expectations. 

Expectations for St. Cloud State are much higher this year.  SCSU is picked 2nd in the preseason NSIC poll with MN-Duluth picked to win the conference.  UMD is led by NSIC preseason offensive player of the year, quarterback Chase Vogler and NSIC preseason defensive player of the year, linebacker Rob Huberty.  Duluth is clearly the favorite.  St. Cloud State lost top playmaker Fred Williams from last season but returns starting quarterback Phil Klaphake and running backs Dante Steward and Brandon Geiss. 

Augustana and Winona State could also contend for the NSIC title.