Last year saw Fort Valley State reach the SIAC Championship game and the Division II playoffs while finishing at 8-4. The Wildcats are hoping to build on that success in 2013.
FVSU will be leaning on its defense this year, which returns seven starters, not including players like linebacker Stephon Harper who saw significant playing time as a back-up.
The offense must rebuild without the All-SIAC duo of quarterback Antonio Henton and wide receiver Chris Slaughter, who played together at Peach County.
Coach Donald Pittmann says this year's team motto is: "One team, one mission: Division II National Championship."
The blue and gold will be tested early when they meet Valdosta State in Macon for a neutral site game.
That game is set for September 7 at 2:00 p.m. at Henderson Stadium.