Video: SLU’s Scelfo ignores preseason polls as Lions prepare for season

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KENNER — Southeastern is the preseason favorite in the new-look Southland Conference this fall and has been ranked as high as No. 10 in one preseason FCS poll.

Does Lions coach Frank Scelfo like playing the role of the hunted?

“It doesn’t matter one way or the other,” Scelfo said Wednesday night at the Southeastern Coaches Caravan event at Messina’s. “What matters is what we do in June and July, what we do in August and how we play in September, October, November and December. That’s what matters.

“Everybody’s opinions are great, but for us, it really doesn’t (matter). It’s how they prepare, and I’m excited about that part.”

Southeastern welcomes back quarterback Cole Kelley, the 2020 Walter Payton Award winner as the FCS offensive player of the year.

“What he did on the field wasn’t his biggest impact,” Scelfo said. “What he did in the locker room and off the field, the camaraderie came together in the springtime. Cole was a big part of that.”

On the other side of the ball, junior cornerback Ferlando Jordan is a returning two-time All-American.

“I’m not going to say he’s a lockdown corner yet, but he plays with a lot of confidence,” Scelfo said. “Watching him grow … it’s just pretty good to watch.”

The eight-game Southland schedule will feature Southeastern and the other five league teams playing a home-and-home series against three teams and single games against two other teams.

Scelfo will draw upon his NFL experience with the Jacksonville Jaguars to help him manage the process.

“I asked a lot of questions during that time,” he said. “From a game-plan standpoint, I think I can rely on that … things that we need to look for, things we can do. We start that process in camp and getting our kids prepared for it.”

Southeastern opens the season at home Sept. 4 against North Alabama at Strawberry Stadium, which will have a new playing surface this fall featuring the Lions’ new logo and branding revealed earlier this month.

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Lenny Vangilder

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Lenny was involved in college athletics starting in the early 1980s, when he began working Tulane University sporting events while still attending Archbishop Rummel High School. He continued that relationship as a student at Loyola University, where he graduated in 1987. For the next 11 years, Vangilder worked in the sports information offices at Southwestern Louisiana (now UL-Lafayette) and Tulane;…

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