Eight members of the Lenoir-Rhyne University Football Team have earned 2012 NCAA Division II Don Hansen's All-Super Region 2 honors. Sophomore fullback
Isaiah Whitaker (Salisbury, N.C.) and senior offensive lineman Kaleb Myrick (Loganville, Ga.) were named to the all-region first team.
Whitaker, a 2012 All-South Atlantic Conference Second-Team honoree, finished second on the squad in rushing yards this season with 874 to go along with five touchdowns. Whitaker also earned all-region accolades for the second straight season.
Myrick won the Jacobs Blocking Trophy, given annually to the top offensive lineman in the conference, this past fall. Myrick, a two-time all-league pick, helped anchor an offensive line that ranked second in the nation in rushing this season at 376.2 yards per game.
Two Lenoir-Rhyne linebackers earned second-team all-region accolades by Don Hansen this year: senior Demetrius Green (Cedartown, Ga.) and sophomore Tanner Botts (Lawrenceville, Ga.).
Demetrius Green finished second on the squad in tackles this year with 107 and earned First-Team All-SAC honors for the third straight season in 2012. Demetrius Green was also a Don Hansen All-Region pick in 2011, the same season he was named conference defensive player of the year.
Botts led the squad in tackles this past fall with 113 to go along with four sacks and two interceptions en route to first-team all-league laurels.
Senior placekicker Zach Neumann (Mechanicsville, Md.), sophomore return specialist Jarrod Spears (Bunnlevel, N.C.) and junior defensive backs Myer Nolan (Atlanta, Ga.) and Michael Green (Kingsland, Ga.) were named to the All-Super Region 2 Third Team.
Neumann, a second-team all-conference selection, broke the school single-season record for points by a kicker with 84 while Spears returned kickoffs for both 95 and 99 yards, respectively, this season.
Spears also led the Bears in rushing yards this year with 994 while averaging 13.3 yards per carry and scoring nine touchdowns on the ground en route to First-Team All-SAC honors as a running back.
Nolan led the squad in interceptions (six) while Michael Green picked off four passes and returned an interception 100 yards for a touchdown in L-R's playoff victory over Fort Valley State.
Michael Green and Nolan also finished with 73 and 61 tackles, respectively, on the season. Both players were first-team all-conference picks in 2012 as well.
Lenoir-Rhyne finished the season with a 9-3 overall record including a 6-1 mark in South Atlantic Conference play. The Bears also won their second straight South Atlantic Conference Championship in 2012 including its first outright league title in 37 years.
In addition, L-R earned a bid to the playoffs for the first time in 50 years and won its first playoff game since 1962, a 21-6 triumph over Fort Valley State. Lenoir-Rhyne fell to Carson-Newman by a 38-35 score in the Second Round of the NCAA Division II Playoffs in Jefferson City, Tenn., in November.
The Don Hansen team carries out the legacy of long-time small college football advocate Don Hansen, who passed away at age 75 on Aug. 29, 2010. Hansen, from Brookfield, Ill., started and published Don Hansen's National Weekly Football Gazette for three decades, selecting NCAA Division II All-America teams for the first time in 1988. Don Hansen's Football Gazette began selecting Division II All-Region squads in 2003.
The first-team and second-team All-Region selections advance to a national ballot from which the 2012 Don Hansen NCAA Division II All-America team will be named later this month.
2012 NCAA Division II Don Hansen's
All-Super Region 2 Football Team
First Team Offense
QB - Cayden Cochran, 6-2, 188, Jr., Valdosta State, Cashion, Okla.
FB - Isaiah Whitaker, 5-10, 225, So, Lenoir-Rhyne, Salisbury, N.C.
RB - Derrick Washington, 6-0, 215, Sr., Tuskegee, Raymore, Mo.
RB - Brandon Baker, 5-11, 210, Jr., Carson-Newman, Miami, Fla.
WR - Chris Bowden, 6-2, 215, Sr., Wingate, Forsyth, Ga.
WR - Gerald Ford, 6-3, 220, Jr., Valdosta State, New Orleans, La.
TE - Eric Watts, 6-4, 220, Sr., Brevard, Powhatan, Va.
AP - Xzanvion Smith, 5-11, 190, Jr., Tusculum, Anderson, S.C.
C - Kevin Day, 6-0, 270, Sr., Carson-Newman, Soddy-Daisy, Tenn
OG - Edmund Kugbila, 6-5, 347, Sr., Valdosta State, Lawrenceville, Ga.
OG - Kaleb Myrick, 6-3, 325, Sr., Lenoir Rhyne, Loganville, Ga.
OT - Ryan Schraeder, 6-7, 300, Sr., Valdosta State, Wichita, Kan.
OT - Mesh Wokomaty, 6-7, 283, Sr., Valdosta State, Dallas, Ga.
PK - Ryne Smith, 5-8, 180, Sr., West Alabama, Madison, Miss.
First Team Defense
DE - Ridge Wilson, 6-4, 256, Sr., West Alabama, Louisville, Ky.
DE - Tyler Josey, 6-2, 249, Sr., Valdosta State, Dublin, Ga.
DG/DT - Lawrence Virgil, 6-5, 278, Jr., Valdosta State, Quitman, Ga.
DG/DT - Mam Nyang, 6-3, 280, Sr., Mars Hill, Marietta, Ga.
LB - Leron Furr, 6-3, 235, Jr., Fort Valley State, Columbus, Ga.
LB - Tavarius Wilson, 5-11, 225, Jr., North Alabama, Jackson, Miss.
LB - Corey Jones, 6-2, 240, Sr., Lane, Compton, Calif.
LB - Cory Johnson, 5-10, 240, Sr., Catawba, Fayetteville, N.C.
LB - Deon Lacey, 6-2, 208, Sr., West Alabama, Birmingham, Ala.
S - Caleb Massey, 6-0, 226, Jr., North Alabama, Sulligent, Ala.
S - Dexter Moody, 6-3, 200, Jr., Albany State, Twin City, Ga.
CB - Jumal Rolle, 6-0, 185, Sr., Catawba, Wilson, N.C.
CB - William Buford, 6-0, 190, Sr., Tuskegee, Thomasville, Ala.
P - Justin Rosenbaum, 6-0, 185, Sr., Fort Valley State, Owosso, Mich.
RS - Thomas Williams, 5-10, 185, Jr., Morehouse, Knightdale, N.C.
Second Team Offense
QB - David Thomas, 6-2, 206, Sr., Miles, Opelika, Ala.
FB - Jordan Ollis, 5-10, 215, So., Brevard, Columbus, N.C.
RB - Shaikel Davis, 5-10, 170, So., Mars Hill, East Flat Rock, N.C.
RB - Cedric O'Neal, 5-11, 197, Fr., Valdosta State, Dublin, Ga.
WR - Dimitri Holmes, 5-10, 165, So., Mars Hill, Athens, Ga.
WR - Seantavious Jones, 6-4, 193, Jr., Valdosta State Tucker, Ga.
TE - Daniel Youssif, 6-4, 249, Sr., West Georgia, Clinton Township, Mich.
AP - Brian Marshall, 5-7, 180, Sr., Tusculum, Chattanooga, Tenn.
C - Jordan Ritchey, 6-4, 295, Sr., West Georgia, Covington, Ga.
OG - Devonte Jones, 6-2, 315, Jr., Tuskegee, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.
OG - Andy Nations, 6-7, 360, Sr., West Alabama, Pascagoula, Miss.
OT - Christopher Tolbert, 6-5, 290, Jr., Tuskegee, Birmingham, Ala.
OT - LeQuawn James, 6-0, 300, Sr., Newberry, Gaston, S.C.
PK - Curt Duncan, 5-11, 185, Jr., Carson-Newman, Morristown, Tenn.
Second Team Defense
DE - Vauchard Goodridge, 6-2, 260, Sr., Clark Atlanta, St. Petersburg, Fla.
DE - Troy Harris, 6-4, 260, Jr., Mars Hill, Orlando, Fla.
DE - Carlos Ware, 6-3, 222, Sr., Kentucky State, Cincinnati, Ohio
DG/DT - Willie Packer, 6-1, 290, Jr., West Alabama, Moss Point, Miss.
DG/DT - Juan Pickett, 6-1, 275, Sr., West Georgia, Columbus, Ga.
LB - William Muscatello, 5-9, 190, Jr., Brevard Lakeland, Fla.
LB - Tanner Botts, 6-2, 230, So., Lenoir-Rhyne, Lawrenceville, Ga.
LB - Chris Pope, 6-1, 216, Jr., Valdosta State, Jackson, Ga.
LB - Quavon Taylor, 6-0, 228, Fr., Tuskegee, Miami, Fla.
LB - Demetrius Green, 5-11, 220, Sr., Lenoir-Rhyne, Cedartown, Ga.
S - Otha Foster, 6-1, 207, Sr., West Alabama, Angie, La.
S - Luke Harris, 6-1, 210, Sr., Tusculum, Floyd, Va.
CB - Carlos Wilson, 5-10, 175, Jr., Stillman, Mobile, Ala.
CB - Adam Lucas, 6-1, 190, Sr., Tuskegee, Riverdale, Ga.
P - Eric Watts, 6-4, 220, Sr., Brevard, Powhatan, Va.
RS - Lavon Downs, 6-1, 185, Sr., Delta State, Avon Park, Fla.
Third Team Offense
QB - Brandon Haywood, 5-11, 185, Sr., Carson-Newman, Rockmart, Ga.
RB - Matt Willis, 5-8, 205, Sr., West Alabama, Collins, Miss.
RB - David Carter, 5-10, 225, Sr., Morehouse, Marietta, Ga.
WR - Corey Washington, 6-4, 200, Jr., Newberry, North Charleston, S.C.
WR - Christopher Slaughter, 6-3, 180, Sr., Fort Valley State, Fort Valley, Ga.
TE - Vance Locke, 6-3, 231, Sr., Kentucky State, Lexington, Ky.
AP - Damian Ford, 6-3, 185, Sr., Stillman, Birmingham, Ala.
C - Joseph So, 6-2, 275, Sr., Wingate, Salisbury, N.C.
C - David Garbo, 6-4, 310, Sr., Fort Valley State, Quitman, Ga.
OG - Cam Short, 6-3, 287, Sr., Valdosta State, Thomaston, Ga.
OG - Nick Allison, 6-4, 290, So., Mars Hill, Asheville, N.C.
OG - Drew Wilkins, 6-4, 315, So., Morehouse, Elkins Park, Pa.
OT - Taylor Burnett, 6-3, 271, Jr., West Alabama, Spanish Fort, Ala.
OT - Will Furlong, 6-5, 275, Sr., North Alabama, DeLand, Fla.
PK - Zach Neumann, 5-7, 180, Sr., Lenoir-Rhyne, Mechanicsville, Md.
Third Team Defense
DE - Nick Napolitano, 6-3, 245, So., Wingate, Shallotte, N.C.
DE - Tevin Davis, 6-0, 244, So., Valdosta State, Forsyth, Ga.
DG/DT - Deshon Collins, 6-2, 280, Sr., Carson-Newman, Birmingham, Ala.
DG/DT - Bernard Little, 6-3, 290, So., Fort Valley State, Eatonton, Ga.
LB - Brandon Houston, 5-10, 225, Sr., Morehouse, Boynton Beach, Fla.
LB - Apollo Strtch, 6-2, 245, Sr., Newberry, Columbia, S.C.
LB - Michael Gruber, 6-3, 225, So., Brevard, Walterboro, S.C.
LB - Jeremy Grable, 6-1, 210, Jr., Valdosta State, Alpharetta, Ga.
S - Myer Nolan, 5-11, 185, Jr., Lenoir-Rhyne, Atlanta, Ga.
S - Dajuan Williams, 6-0, 180, Sr., Fort Valley State, Baxley, Ga.
S - Michael Green, 6-0, 195, Jr., Lenoir-Rhyne, Kingsland, Ga.
S - Matt Pierce 5-10, 196, Sr., Valdosta State, New Orleans, La.
CB - Malcolm Butler, 5-11, 180, Jr., West Alabama, Vicksburg, Miss.
CB - Brian Spencer, 6-1, 190, Sr., Newberry, Columbia, S.C.
P - Andy Rosetti, 5-11, 195, Jr., Tusculum, Kenneth City, Fla.
RS - Jarrod Spears, 5-9, 180, So., Lenoir-Rhyne, Bunnlevel, N.C.
Photo Courtesy: Kaleb Myrick, L-R Athletics