Seven Eagles earn All-SAC football honors
ROCK HILL, S.C. – Carson-Newman running back Nate Inman (Fitgerald, Ga.), defensive end Zeke Andrews (Eastman, Ga.), and Larry Lumpkin (Grand Bay, Ala.) have all been named to the 2011 Football All-South Atlantic Conference first team, the conference office announced on Tuesday.
The trio is among seven Eagles to earn All-SAC honors for the Eagles after a disappointing and injury-plagued 5-6 season in 2011.
Sophomore offensive tackle Alex Taylor (Bristol, Tenn.) and junior center Kevin Day (Soddy Daisy, Tenn.) both earned second team honors on the Eagles offensive line. Junior cornerbacks Oliver Davis (Acworth, Ga.) and Tarvin Jones (St. Petersburg, Fla.) were also named to the second team.
Inman was the heart of an Eagles offense that was shredded by injuries.
The senior became the ninth Eagle to eclipse the 3,000-yard mark for his career. He rushed for 1,103 yards on 184 carries on the year, averaging six yards per carry. He led the team with 12 TDs.
Inman carried the Eagles in a 35-27 win against Tusculum. He ran for 280 yards, the fifth most in school history, and two scores.
Andrews was the most dominant defensive lineman in the league this season. The senior had a career-high 16 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks. He led the league in tackles for loss and was fourth in sacks.
Lumpkin was among league leaders in tackles. He finished the season with 94 tackles, 68 solo. The junior averaged 8.5 stops per game and was second on the team with 10 tackles for loss.
Day and Taylor powered the interior of the Eagles' offensive line. The two combined for 21-of-22 potential starts on the season, leading the Eagles to 277.4 yards per game on the ground. Taylor has missed one start in his first two seasons, while Day has made 34-straight starts for the Eagles at center.
Davis and Jones anchored the Eagles' secondary. Davis had 38 tackles on the season and an interception to seal the win against Tusculum. Jones led the Eagles with three interceptions.
Following a memorable football regular season, the SAC announced its All-Conference Teams and individual award winners on Tuesday, with Offensive Player of the Year Jonas Randolph and Defensive Player of the Year Demetrius Green headlining the honorees.
Overall, co-SAC champions Mars Hill and Lenoir-Rhyne had the most student-athletes named All-Conference, with the Lions placing a total of 10 on the First and Second Teams while the Bears had nine.
Randolph spearheaded a potent Mars Hill offense with one of the best individual seasons in conference history. The senior, who also earned first team All-Conference accolades in addition to being Offensive Player of the Year, was the leading rusher in all NCAA divisions in 2011, finishing the regular season with a SAC record 1,970 yards.
Randolph also set the SAC single-game rushing record against Tusculum on Oct. 29, piling up 373 yards. With Mars Hill's season still active after being selected to the NCAA Division II Football Championship, Randolph has a shot at breaking the conference's career rushing record, which he trails by just 196 yards.
Green, who at linebacker anchored Lenoir-Rhyne's league-leading scoring and total defense, was named SAC Defensive Player of the Year and first team All-Conference after averaging 7.7 tackles for the Bears. Green did a bit of everything in helping L-R finish 10th in the country in total defense, recording 3.5 sacks, eight tackles-for-loss, three passes defended and two pass breakups.
Joining Green on the All-SAC First Team from Lenoir-Rhyne were quarterback Major Herron – a top-five finisher in the conference in both rushing and passing yards – defensive lineman Brandon Martin, defensive back Michael Green, kicker Colin Corpe and offensive lineman Chandler Rearden, who also earned the Jacobs Blocking Trophy for the second season in a row.
L-R also placed three on the All-SAC Second Team.
In addition to Randolph, Mars Hill had four more first-team selections in tight end Josh Crumpton, offensive lineman Tyler Hodgson, defensive lineman Kevin Johnson and defensive back Marvin James.
The Lions also had five second-team selections, led by wide receiver Dimitri Holmes, who was top-five in the SAC in receptions, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns en route to being named the league's Offensive Freshman of the Year.
Brevard placed five student-athletes on the All-Conference First Team, including linebacker Prince Simunyu, who finished second in the league in tackles and fifth in tackles-for-loss. He was joined on the First Team by offensive lineman Caleb Campbell, defensive back Michael Gist and Eric Watts, who earned All-SAC distinction both as a wide receiver and punter.
BC had two players earn second-team distinctions as well.
Newberry's 4-3 finish in the SAC landed the Wolves four spots on the All-Conference First Team in running back John Gadson, offensive lineman Chase Gamble, defensive lineman Anterio Arnold and linebacker Apollo Stretch, the league's leading tackler. They join three other teammates on the Second Team.
Tusuclum had eight All-Conference selections – three on the First Team and five on the Second Team. The Pioneers' high-scoring offense was led by wide receiver and return specialist Deonte Gist, who finished second in the SAC in all-purpose yards, earning All-Conference honors at both positions. He was joined on the First Team by long snapper Skylar West.
The strong offensive attack of Wingate landed the Bulldogs three spots on the All-SAC First Team in wide receiver Chris Bowden, tight end Brandon Ellington and offensive lineman Mike Arndt. Three more Wingate players were named to the Second Team as well.
Catawba's Jumal Rolle led the SAC in passes defended, earning first team All-Conference defensive back honors. He was joined by first-team linebacker selection Lakeem Perry and three members of the Second Team, including Defensive Freshman of the Year CJ Barksdale.
Finally, after leading their teams to identical 6-1 conference records, Lenoir-Rhyne's Mike Houston and Mars Hill's Tim Clifton were fittingly named co-SAC Coaches of the Year. It marks the first time either coach has received the award.
2011 ALL-SOUTH ATLANTIC CONFERENCE FOOTBALL TEAMS
1st Team Offense
QB – Majon Herron, Lenoir-Rhyne
RB – Jonas Randolph, Mars Hill
RB – Nate Inman, Carson-Newman
RB – John Gadson, Newberry
WR – Deonte Gist, Tusculum
WR – Chris Bowden, Wingate
WR – Eric Watts, Brevard
TE – Brandon Ellington, Wingate
TE – Josh Crumpton, Mars Hill
OL – Chandler Reardon, Lenoir-Rhyne
OL – Caleb Campbell, Brevard
OL – Chase Gamble, Newberry
OL – Tyler Hodgson, Mars Hill
OL – Mike Arndt, Wingate
PK – Colin Corpe, Lenoir-Rhyne
RS – Deonte Gist, Tusculum
1st Team Defense
DL – Zeke Andrews, Carson-Newman
DL – Brandon Martin, Lenoir-Rhyne
DL – Kevin Johnson, Mars Hill
DL – Anterio Arnold, Newberry
LB – Prince Simunyu, Brevard
LB – Apollo Stretch, Newberry
LB – Demetrius Green, Lenoir-Rhyne
LB – Larry Lumpkin, Carson-Newman
LB – Lakeem Perry, Catawba
DB – Michael Green, Lenoir-Rhyne
DB – Michael Gist, Brevard
DB – Marvin James, Mars Hill
DB – Jumal Rolle, Catawba
P – Eric Watts, Brevard
LS – Skylar West, Tusculum
*Note: There was a tie for TE so no second team. There was a tie for linebacker so 5 on 1st team and 3 on 2nd team.
2nd Team Offense
QB – Cody Haffly, Wingate
RB – Isiah Whitaker, Lenoir-Rhyne
RB – Josh Wright, Catawba
RB – Patrick Park, Mars Hill
WR – Dimitri Holmes, Mars Hill
WR – Rashaad Carter, Tusculum
WR – Brandon Bostick, Newberry
OL – Kevin Day, Carson-Newman
OL – Josh Stone, Tusculum
OL – Nick Allison, Mars Hill
OL – Pat Aiken, Tusculum
OL – Alex Taylor, Carson-Newman
PK – Michael Pinkerton, Mars Hill
RS – Michael Green, Lenoir-Rhyne
2nd Team Defense
DL –Terrence Smith, Tusculum
DL – Jack Taylor, Wingate
DL – CJ Barksdale, Catawba
DL – Christian Lumbu, Brevard
LB – Rudy Cabral, Mars Hill
LB – Jared Seate, Wingate
LB – Rufus Jenkins, Brevard
DB – David Davis, Newberry
DB – Oliver Davis, Carson-Newman
DB – Jamont Jones, Lenoir-Rhyne
DB – Tarvin Jones, Carson-Newman
P – JoJo Morris, Newberry
P – Andy Rosetti, Tusculum
LS – DJ Davis, Catawba
*Tie for 2nd Team punter
Offensive Player of the Year: Jonas Randolph, Mars Hill
Defensive Player of the Year: Demetrius Green, Lenoir-Rhyne
Offensive Freshman of the Year: Dimitri Holmes, Mars Hill
Defensive Freshman of the Year: CJ Barksdale, Catawba
Jacobs Blocking Trophy: Chandler Reardon, Lenoir-Rhyne
Coach of the Year: Tim Clifton, Mars Hill and Mike Houston, Lenoir-Rhyne
*Tie for Coach of the Year