Salukis eager to get season started, improve upon last year's 6-5 record.

The Salukis are coming off a 6-5 season in which they finished tied for third place in the Missouri Valley Football Conference with a 5-3 conference mark. SIU is picked seventh in the MVFC Preseason Poll. Offensively, Southern returns seven players who started at least half of the team's games last year and 10 players with starting experience. All-American tight end MyCole Pruitt returns for his junior season.

With the addition of three transfers at running back and a more experienced offensive line, SIU will look to improve its ground game.

The defense returns only five starters and will have to replace five seniors from last year's front seven. However, with 21 lettermen returning on defense, SIU has experienced players who will look to step into a starting role. On special teams, senior punter Austin Pucylowski has been named an All-MVFC honorable mention.

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    returning starters

    Victor Craven
    68 Position: OT
    Information: Played in four games...Started the final four games of the season at left tackle.
    Tanner Crum
    65 Position: C
    height/weight: 6'3/202
    Information: Moved from guard to center in the offseason...Played in all 11 games...Started the season opener at right guard...Started the final 10 games at center.
    Kory Faulkner
    19 Position: QB
    height/weight: 6'4/227
    Information: Started all 11 games at quarterback...Threw for 1,865 yards, the 12th highest single-season total in school history...Completed 191 passes, fourth most in a single SIU season...Became the 11th player in school history to throw for 3,000 career yards.
    Nate Haremza
    79 Position: G
    height/weight: 6'4/308
    Information: Started all 11 games at left guard...Recorded one tackle against Eastern Illinois.
    John Lantz
    13 Position: WR
    height/weight: 6'2/201
    Information: Played in all 11 games and started eight games at wide receiver...Fourth on the team in receptions (26) and receiving yards (250)...Hauled in a season-high four receptions against Youngstown State and again against North Dakota State...Recorded a season-best 45 receiving yards against Indiana State.
    Cory Lee
    40 Position: OLB
    height/weight: 5'11/210
    Information: Started all 11 games at outside linebacker...10th on the team with 36 total tackles...Recorded a career-high six tackles at Missouri State...Recorded 0.5 TFL against Indiana State and against South Dakota State...Recovered a fumble against South Dakota State...Received the MVFC Commissioner's Academic Excellence Award, which re­quires a minimum GPA of 3.2 for the previous two semesters.
    LaSteven McKinney
    21 Position: WR
    height/weight: 5'9/174
    Information: Selected to Phil Steele's All-MVFC Second Team as a punter returner...Named to the CFPA preseason punt returner award watch list.
    Bryan Presume
    9 Position: ILB
    height/weight: 5'11/229
    Information: Named to the CFPA preseason linebacker award watch list.
    MyCole Pruitt
    4 Position: TE
    height/weight: 6'3/250
    Information: Named second-team All-American by The Sports Network and Phil Steele...Selected to Phil Steele's All-MVFC First Team...Selected to the College Football Performance Awards preseason tight end award watch list...Named to MVFC Preseason Team.
    Luke Thuston
    16 Position: S
    height/weight: 5'11/192
    Information: Played in 10 games and made six starts...Started the season opener at strong safety and started the final five games of the season at free safety...Recorded 35 tackles, 22 solo tackles...Recorded 3.5 tackles for loss.
    Terrell Wilson
    5 Position: CB
    height/weight: 6'1/187
    Information: Started all 11 games at cornerback...Fourth on the team with 60 total tackles...Recorded 38 solo tackles...Intercepted a pass at Illinois State...Recorded 3.0 tackles for loss, including 1.5 TFL in the season opener at Eastern Illinois.
    Ethan Wirth
    77 Position: OT
    height/weight: 6'6/291
    Information: Transferred to SIU less than a month before the start of the season...Played in 10 games and started nine games at right tackle.

    2012 stats

    name att net yds avg long TD
    Srother, S. 135 554 4.1 43 0
    McCall, M. 130 489 3.8 33 8
    McKinney, L. 25 131 5.2 14 1
    Kalokoh, M. 34 131 3.9 36 0
    Faulker, K. 76 74 1.0 49 2
    name comp att pct yds td
    Faulkner, K. 191 325 58.8 1865 11
    Hill, A.J. 4 9 44.4 23 1
    name No. yds avg long TD
    Pruitt, M. 49 577 11.8 35 4
    McKinney, L. 43 363 8.4 43 3
    Lewis, D. 27 315 11.7 39 2
    Lantz, J. 26 250 9.6 33 0
    Strother, S. 21 99 4.7 12 0
    McCall, M. 17 173 10.2 74 1