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Big Sky Football All-Conference Team

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OGDEN, Utah (Nov. 25, 2014) - The three Big Sky Conference playoff teams combined to place 15 players on the 2014 All-Conference Football Team, which was released on Tuesday.

Big Sky Conference champion Eastern Washington saw six of its players tabbed to the league's top team. Junior quarterback Vernon Adams Jr. captured the league's Offensive Player of the Year, becoming the first repeat winner of the honor since Eastern Washington QB Erik Meyer in 2004 and 2005.

Five Montana State student-athletes and four from the Montana Grizzlies were selected to the First Team. Grizzly senior defensive end Zack Wagenmann earned Defensive Player of the Year honors and was named to the All-Conference First Team for the third straight season.

The Eagles, Grizzlies and Bobcats all earned postseason berths. Montana and Montana State will play this Saturday, while Eastern Washington has a bye to the second round.

The teams and individual award winners were selected by the 13 conference head coaches on Monday.

Southern Utah junior quarterback Ammon Olsen, a transfer from BYU, was named the Newcomer of the Year. Idaho State redshirt freshman linebacker Mario Jenkins was selected as the Freshman of the Year.

Twelve of the 13 Big Sky teams placed at least one player on the 30-player First Team. Sacramento State senior wide receiver DeAndre Carter was the only unanimous First Team selection. Carter leads the nation in catches (99), receiving yards (1,321) and touchdown catches (17).

Carter was one of five players to earn First Team All-Conference honors for the second time. Eastern Washington sophomore wide receiver Cooper Kupp, Adams., and Portland State senior punter Kyle Loomis were repeat selections. Eastern Washington senior linebacker Ronnie Hamlin, a First Team pick in 2012, returned to the top squad.

Adams, from Pasadena, Calif., picked up the 2014 season right where he left off in 2013 when he threw for nearly 5,000 yards and 55 touchdowns. Adams suffered a broken foot in the sixth game, forcing him to sit out four weeks. Still, he guided EWU to a 7-1 record with the only loss coming 59-52 on the road against Washington, a game where he threw for 475 yards and seven touchdowns. In eight games, Adams has thrown for 2,876 yards with 30 touchdowns and just five interceptions. Adams is averaging 359.5 passing yards and 391.5 yards of total offense per game. His efficiency rating is 176.9.

Wagenmann, a senior from Missoula, Mont., led the Big Sky during the regular season with 13.5 sacks, and was second with 18.5 tackles for loss. He also had a league-high five forced fumbles and 66 total tackles. Montana leads the Big Sky in scoring defense (20.2 points per game).

Olsen, from Draper, Utah, began the season as a backup for Southern Utah, but took over starting duties in the fourth game. He completed 63.7 percent of his passes for 3,034 yards with 21 touchdowns and 10 interceptions.

Jenkins, from Boise, led Idaho State with 120 total tackles – 10.5 for loss – three interceptions, two sacks, eight quarterback hurries, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. Jenkins ranks fifth in the league in tackles per game (10.0), which is the most by an FCS freshman.

Joining Adams, Kupp, and Hamlin on the First Team from Eastern Washington were senior safety Tevin McDonald, senior offensive tackle Jake Rogers and junior offensive guard Aaron Neary. Kupp enters the playoffs with 82 catches for 1,160 yards and 14 touchdowns. McDonald, in his second season with the Eagles after transferring from UCLA, tallied 68 tackles, three interceptions, three forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries. Hamlin amassed 86 total tackles. Rogers and Neary anchored an offensive line that helped the Eagles average a national-best 44.6 points and 522.8 yards of offense per game.

Senior linebacker Alex Singleton led the contingent of five Montana State Bobcats on the First Team. Singleton ranks fourth in the league with an average of 10.6 tackles per game. He is third in the nation with an average of 6.8 solo tackles per game. Singleton netted 14 tackles for loss. Sophomore offensive guard JP Flynn, senior tight end Tiai Salanoa, senior cornerback Deonte Flowers and sophomore special teamer Chad Newell were also tabbed to the First Team. Salanoa caught 29 passes for 298 yards during the regular season. Flowers had 10 pass breakups, an interception and 46 tackles.

Senior safety Matt Hermanson, senior defensive tackle Tonga Takai and senior running back Jordan Canada were the other Grizzlies on the First Team. Hermanson led the league with six interceptions and 99 tackles. Takai had 44 tackles – 6.5 for loss – and an interception during the regular season. Canada rushed for 1,011 yards and 11 touchdowns.

Senior quarterback Justin Arias led a trio of Idaho State Bengals on the First Team. Arias, who shared QB honors with Adams, leads the nation in passing yards (4,076) and touchdown passes (38). Arias led Idaho State to eight victories, the combined total for the program the previous three seasons. Idaho State leads the nation in total offense and is second in passing offense.

Junior running back Xavier Finney, who led the Big Sky with 1,495 rushing yards, was also named to the First Team, along with Bengal sophomore wide receiver Madison Mangum, who caught 83 passes for 1,234 yards and 10 touchdowns.

Cal Poly senior linebackers Cameron Ontko and Nick Dzubnar represented the Mustangs on the First Team. Dzubnar, a candidate for the Buck Buchanan Award, led the Big Sky with 167 total tackles. He also had three sacks, two interceptions, a forced fumble and six pas breakups. Ontko amassed 101 total tackles.

Northern Arizona cornerback Marcus Alford and Lumberjack fullback Nick Butier were selected to the First Team. Alford tallied three interceptions and 13 total pass breakups. Butier scored one rushing touchdown and caught 17 passes and a touchdown.

Portland State senior Cornelius Edison was selected as the First Team center. He joined Loomis on the first team. Loomis led the nation in punting for the second straight season, averaging 46 yards per punt.

Southern Utah junior defensive end James Cowser earned the nod at defensive end after setting a Big Sky single-season record with 29 tackles for loss. Cowser also registered 11.5 sacks.

North Dakota's Alex Tillman was named the First Team return specialist. Tillman, a senior transfer from the University of Houston, averaged 16.9 yards per punt return, including a 95-yarder for a touchdown against Portland State. He also averaged 18.8 yards per kick return.

Sacramento State junior Brad Cornish was selected as the kicker. Cornish made 14-of-17 field goals, with a long of 49 yards. He had 16 touchbacks on kickoffs, and made 56 of his 59 extra points.

UC Davis senior offensive tackle Ian Joseph rounded out the First Team.

Individual Award Winners

Offensive Player of the Year

Vernon Adams, Jr., QB, Eastern Washington

Defensive Player of the Year

Zack Wagenmann, Sr., DE, Montana

Newcomer of the Year

Ammon Olsen, Jr., QB, Southern Utah

Freshman of the Year

Mario Jenkins, LB, Idaho State

Three-Time First Team Selections

Zack Wagenmann, Sr., DE, Montana

Two-Time First Team Selections

Cooper Kupp, So., WR, Eastern Washington

Vernon Adams Jr., Jr., QB, Eastern Washington

DeAndre Carter, Sr., WR, Sacramento State

Ronnie Hamlin, Sr., LB, Esatern Washington

Kyle Loomis, Sr., P, Portland State

Unanimous Selections

DeAndre Carter, Sr., WR, Sacramento State

FIRST TEAM OFFENSE

Wide Receivers #Cooper Kupp, So., Eastern Washington

^#DeAndre Carter, Sr., Sacramento State

Madison Mangum, So., Idaho State

Tackles Jake Rodgers, Sr., Eastern Washington

Ian Joseph, Sr., UC Davis

Guards Aaron Neary, Jr., Eastern Washington

JP Flynn, So., Montana State

Center Cornelius Edison, Sr., Portland State

Tight End Tiai Salanoa, Sr., Montana State

Quarterback Vernon Adams Jr., Jr. Eastern Washington

Justin Arias, Sr., Idaho State

Running Backs Xavier Finney, Jr., Idaho State

Jordan Canada, Sr., Montana

Fullback Nick Butier, Jr., Northern Arizona

Placekicker Brad Cornish, Jr., Sacramento State

Return Specialist Alex Tillman, Sr., North Dakota

FIRST TEAM SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER

Chad Newell, So., Montana State

FIRST TEAM DEFENSE

Tackles Tonga Takai, Sr., Montana

Lexington Smith, Sr., Northern Colorado

Ends $Zack Wagenmann, Sr., Montana

James Cowser, Jr., Southern Utah

Outside LBs Alex Singleton, Sr., Montana State

Cameron Ontko, Sr., Cal Poly

Inside LBs Nick Dzubnar, Sr., Cal Poly

#Ronnie Hamlin, Sr., Eastern Washington

Cornerbacks Deonte Flowers, Sr., Montana State

Marcus Alford, Jr., Northern Arizona

Safeties Tevin McDonald, Sr., Eastern Washington

Matt Hermanson, Sr., Montana

Punter #Kyle Loomis, Sr., Portland State

$Three-Time First Team All-Conference

#Two-Time First Team All-Conference

^Unanimous Selection

SECOND TEAM OFFENSE

Wide Receivers Jamaal Jones, Jr., Montana

Nnamdi Agude, Jr., Sacramento State

Shaydon Kehano, Sr., Weber State

Tackles Jim Bagley, Sr., Idaho State

Joe Gurski, Sr., Northern Arizona

Guards Quinn Catalano, Sr., Montana State

Nick Enriquez, So., Cal Poly

Center Christian Diehm, Jr., Idaho State

Tight End Beau Gardner, Sr., Northern Arizona

Quarterback Garrett Safron, Sr., Sacramento State

Running Backs Kori Garcia, So., Cal Poly

Quincy Forte, Sr., Eastern Washington

Fullback Brandon Howe, Sr., Cal Poly

Placekicker Jonathan Gonzales, So., Portland State

Return Specialist Shawn Johnson, Sr., Montana State

SECOND TEAM SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER

Nick Butier, Jr., Northern Arizona

SECOND TEAM DEFENSE

Tackles Tyler Kuder, Jr., Idaho State

Taylor Sheridan, Jr., Montana State

Ends Samson Ebukam, So., Eastern Washington

Jaycee Totty, Sr., Sacramento State

Outside LBs Mario Jenkins, Fr., Idaho State

Kendrick Van Ackeren, Jr., Montana

Inside LBs Darnell Sankey, Jr., Sacramento State

Chinedu Ahanonu, So., Southern Utah

Cornerbacks Josh Dennard, Sr., Montana

Aaron Sibley, Jr., Portland State

Safeties Kyle Griffin, Sr., Northern Colorado

Miles Killebrew, Jr., Southern Utah

Punter Jake Miller, Sr., Eastern Washington

THIRD TEAM OFFENSE

Wide Receivers Shaq Hill, Jr., Eastern Washington

Ify Umodu, Sr., Northern Arizona

Dimitri Stimphil, Sr., Northern Colorado

Tackles John Weidenaar, Jr., Montana State

Aleksander Milanovic, Jr., Sacramento State

Guards Eric Rodriguez, So., Northern Arizona

Derek Nielsen, Sr., Sacramento State

Center Joel Horn, Jr., Montana State

Tight End Josh Cook, So., Idaho State

Quarterback Chris Brown, Jr., Cal Poly

Dakota Prukop, So., Montana State

Running Backs Gabe Manzanares, Sr., UC Davis

Shawn Johnson, Sr., Montana State

Fullback Bo Bolen, Sr., Weber State

Placekicker Reid Taubenheim, Fr., North Dakota

Return Specialist Cooper Kupp, So., Eastern Washington

THIRD TEAM SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER

Nick Moyer, Sr., Cal Poly

THIRD TEAM DEFENSE

Tackles Marcus Paige-Allen, So., Cal Poly

Dylan Zylstra, Sr., Eastern Washington

Ends Austin Graves, Sr., Idaho State

Dustin Martin, Sr., Weber State

Outside LBs Cole Moore, Sr., Montana State

Dominick Sierra, Sr., Northern Colorado

Inside LBs Mitch Beckstead, Sr., Idaho State

Jeremiah Kose, Jr., Montana

Cornerbacks Courtney Hall, Sr., Northern Colorado

LeShaun Sims, Jr., Southern Utah

Safeties Taison Manu, Jr., Idaho State

Rob Marshall, Sr., Montana State

Robbie Kendall, Sr., Sacramento State

Punter Ryan Hawkins, Jr., Northern Arizona

HONORABLE MENTION OFFENSE

Wide Receivers – Jordan Hines, Jr., Cal Poly; Chris Nicholls, Sr., Cal Poly; Kenny Mitchell, Sr., Cal Poly; Kendrick Bourne, So., Eastern Washington; KW Williams, So., Idaho State; Mitch Griebel, Jr., Montana State; Alex Holmes, Jr., Northern Arizona; Stephen Miller, So., Northern Colorado; Sean Leslie, Jr., Northern Colorado; Kasey Closs, Sr., Portland State; Chris Robinson, Sr., Southern Utah; Ramon Vargas, So., UC Davis; Cameron Livingston, So., Weber State.

Tackles – Weston Walker, Jr., Cal Poly; Clay DeBord, Jr., Eastern Washington; Terrence Carey, Jr., Idaho State; Leroy Guenther, Jr., Northern Arizona; Marcus Piechowski, So., Northern Colorado; Kyle Smith, So., Portland State.

Guards – Wesley Wingrove, Jr., Idaho State; Jordan Hines, Sr., G, Montana; Cam Keizur, So., Portland State; Dan Fleischman, Jr., Southern Utah; Joe Hawkins, Jr., Weber State.

Centers – Stephen Sippel, Jr., Cal Poly; Jase Butorac, Sr., Eastern Washington; Logan Hines, Sr., Montana; Nick Nissen, Sr., Southern Utah; Parker Smith, Jr., UC Davis; Alex Land, Sr., Weber State.

Tight ends – Zach Wimberly, So., Eastern Washington; Mitch Saylor, Sr., Montana; Zach Adler, Jr., North Dakota; Chris Broadnax, Sr., Sacramento State; Mark Martindale, Sr., UC Davis.

QuarterbackS – Jordan Johnson, Sr., Montana; Sean Rubalcaba, So., Northern Colorado; Ben Scott, So, UC Davis.

Running Back – Mario Brown, Sr., Eastern Washington; Travon Van, Sr., Montana; Gunnar Brekke, So., Montana State; Jer Garman, Sr., North Dakota; Casey Jahn, Jr., Northern Arizona; Robert Holland, Sr., Northern Colorado; Steven Long, Fr., Portland State; Jordan Robinson, So., Sacramento State.

FullbackS – Jamal Wilson, Jr., Montana; Chad Newell, So., Montana State; Dwayne Pecosky, Sr., North Dakota; Quinn Zamora, So., Northern Colorado; Dalton Turay, Sr., UC Davis.

PlacekickerS – Tyler McNannay, Jr., Eastern Washington; Daniel Sullivan, Jr., Montana; Luke Daly, Fr., Montana State; Ryan Hawkins, Jr., Northern Arizona.

Return Specialists – John Nguyen, So., Montana; Gunnar Brekke, So., Montana State; Ellis Onic II, Fr., Northern Colorado; Bo Bolen, Sr., Weber State.

HONORABLE MENTION SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER

Cody Hecker, Sr., Eastern Washington; Nick Albano, Sr., Idaho State; Russell Smith, So., Sacramento State; Mike Sharp, So., Southern Utah.

HONORABLE MENTION DEFENSE

TackleS – Chris Lawrence, Sr., Cal Poly; Matt Sommer, So., Eastern Washington; Trevor Rehm, Sr., Montana; Deon Young, Fr., Northern Arizona; Spencer Cummings, Sr., DT, North Dakota; Joe Lopez, Sr., Portland State; Junior Alexis, Jr., Portland State; Robert Torgerson, So., Southern Utah; Connor Myers, Sr., Weber State.

Ends – Josh Letuligasenoa, So., Cal Poly; Chris Judge, Sr., Cal Poly; Zack Johnson, Sr., Eastern Washington; Tyrone Holmes, Jr., Montana; Odin Coe, Jr., Montana State; Brandon Dranka, Fr., North Dakota; Siupeli Anau, Jr., Northern Arizona; Mikhail Dubose, Jr., Northern Colorado; Kyle Todd, Sr., Northern Colorado; Brandon Tobias, Sr., DE, Portland State; Ben Cowger, Sr., Sacramento State; Andrew Eide, So., Southern Utah

Outside Linebackers – Miquiyah Zamora, So., Eastern Washington; Herbert Gamboa, Jr., Montana.

Inside Linebackers – Cody McCarthy, Sr., Eastern Washington; Na'a Moeakiola, Sr., Montana State; Will Ratelle, Jr., North Dakota; Austin Hasquet, Sr., Northern Arizona; Jeremy Lutali, Jr., Portland State; Henry Fernandez, Sr., Sacramento State; Emmett Tela, Fr., Weber State.

Cornerbacks – Chris Fletcher, Jr., Cal Poly; Karlton Dennis, Jr., Cal Poly; Victor Gamboa, Fr., Eastern Washington; Vai Peko, Sr., Idaho State; Nate Harris, Jr., Montana; Alex Tillman, Sr., North Dakota; Blake Bailey, Sr., Northern Arizona; Brandon Lenoir, So., Northern Colorado; Xavier Coleman, So., Portland State; Deon'tae Florence, Sr., Weber State.

Safeties – Jordan Williams, Sr., Cal Poly; Dave Douglas, Sr., Cal Poly; Zach Bruce, So., Eastern Washington; Justin Whitted, Sr., Montana; Darius Lewis, Jr., Northern Arizona; Taylor Risner, So., Northern Colorado; Charles Boyett, S, UC Davis; Josh Burton, So., Weber State.

Punter – Trevor Bolton, Jr., Montana State; Colby Wadman, So., UC Davis; Blake O'Neill, Jr., Weber State.

OGDEN, Utah (Nov. 25, 2014) - The three Big Sky Conference playoff teams combined to place 15 players on the 2014 All-Conference Football Team, which was released on Tuesday.

Big Sky Conference champion Eastern Washington saw six of its players tabbed to the league's top team. Junior quarterback Vernon Adams Jr. captured the league's Offensive Player of the Year, becoming the first repeat winner of the honor since Eastern Washington QB Erik Meyer in 2004 and 2005.

Five Montana State student-athletes and four from the Montana Grizzlies were selected to the First Team. Grizzly senior defensive end Zack Wagenmann earned Defensive Player of the Year honors and was named to the All-Conference First Team for the third straight season.

The Eagles, Grizzlies and Bobcats all earned postseason berths. Montana and Montana State will play this Saturday, while Eastern Washington has a bye to the second round.

The teams and individual award winners were selected by the 13 conference head coaches on Monday.

Southern Utah junior quarterback Ammon Olsen, a transfer from BYU, was named the Newcomer of the Year. Idaho State redshirt freshman linebacker Mario Jenkins was selected as the Freshman of the Year.

Twelve of the 13 Big Sky teams placed at least one player on the 30-player First Team. Sacramento State senior wide receiver DeAndre Carter was the only unanimous First Team selection. Carter leads the nation in catches (99), receiving yards (1,321) and touchdown catches (17).

Carter was one of five players to earn First Team All-Conference honors for the second time. Eastern Washington sophomore wide receiver Cooper Kupp, Adams., and Portland State senior punter Kyle Loomis were repeat selections. Eastern Washington senior linebacker Ronnie Hamlin, a First Team pick in 2012, returned to the top squad.

Adams, from Pasadena, Calif., picked up the 2014 season right where he left off in 2013 when he threw for nearly 5,000 yards and 55 touchdowns. Adams suffered a broken foot in the sixth game, forcing him to sit out four weeks. Still, he guided EWU to a 7-1 record with the only loss coming 59-52 on the road against Washington, a game where he threw for 475 yards and seven touchdowns. In eight games, Adams has thrown for 2,876 yards with 30 touchdowns and just five interceptions. Adams is averaging 359.5 passing yards and 391.5 yards of total offense per game. His efficiency rating is 176.9.

Wagenmann, a senior from Missoula, Mont., led the Big Sky during the regular season with 13.5 sacks, and was second with 18.5 tackles for loss. He also had a league-high five forced fumbles and 66 total tackles. Montana leads the Big Sky in scoring defense (20.2 points per game).

Olsen, from Draper, Utah, began the season as a backup for Southern Utah, but took over starting duties in the fourth game. He completed 63.7 percent of his passes for 3,034 yards with 21 touchdowns and 10 interceptions.

Jenkins, from Boise, led Idaho State with 120 total tackles – 10.5 for loss – three interceptions, two sacks, eight quarterback hurries, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. Jenkins ranks fifth in the league in tackles per game (10.0), which is the most by an FCS freshman.

Joining Adams, Kupp, and Hamlin on the First Team from Eastern Washington were senior safety Tevin McDonald, senior offensive tackle Jake Rogers and junior offensive guard Aaron Neary. Kupp enters the playoffs with 82 catches for 1,160 yards and 14 touchdowns. McDonald, in his second season with the Eagles after transferring from UCLA, tallied 68 tackles, three interceptions, three forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries. Hamlin amassed 86 total tackles. Rogers and Neary anchored an offensive line that helped the Eagles average a national-best 44.6 points and 522.8 yards of offense per game.

Senior linebacker Alex Singleton led the contingent of five Montana State Bobcats on the First Team. Singleton ranks fourth in the league with an average of 10.6 tackles per game. He is third in the nation with an average of 6.8 solo tackles per game. Singleton netted 14 tackles for loss. Sophomore offensive guard JP Flynn, senior tight end Tiai Salanoa, senior cornerback Deonte Flowers and sophomore special teamer Chad Newell were also tabbed to the First Team. Salanoa caught 29 passes for 298 yards during the regular season. Flowers had 10 pass breakups, an interception and 46 tackles.

Senior safety Matt Hermanson, senior defensive tackle Tonga Takai and senior running back Jordan Johnson were the other Grizzlies on the First Team. Hermanson led the league with six interceptions and 99 tackles. Takai had 44 tackles – 6.5 for loss – and an interception during the regular season. Canada rushed for 1,011 yards and 11 touchdowns.

Senior quarterback Justin Arias led a trio of Idaho State Bengals on the First Team. Arias, who shared QB honors with Adams, leads the nation in passing yards (4,076) and touchdown passes (38). Arias led Idaho State to eight victories, the combined total for the program the previous three seasons. Idaho State leads the nation in total offense and is second in passing offense.

Junior running back Xavier Finney, who led the Big Sky with 1,495 rushing yards, was also named to the First Team, along with Bengal sophomore wide receiver Madison Mangum, who caught 83 passes for 1,234 yards and 10 touchdowns.

Cal Poly senior linebackers Cameron Ontko and Nick Dzubnar represented the Mustangs on the First Team. Dzubnar, a candidate for the Buck Buchanan Award, led the Big Sky with 167 total tackles. He also had three sacks, two interceptions, a forced fumble and six pas breakups. Ontko amassed 101 total tackles.

Northern Arizona cornerback Marcus Alford and Lumberjack fullback Nick Butier were selected to the First Team. Alford tallied three interceptions and 13 total pass breakups. Butier scored one rushing touchdown and caught 17 passes and a touchdown.

Portland State senior Cornelius Edison was selected as the First Team center. He joined Loomis on the first team. Loomis led the nation in punting for the second straight season, averaging 46 yards per punt.

Southern Utah junior defensive end James Cowser earned the nod at defensive end after setting a Big Sky single-season record with 29 tackles for loss. Cowser also registered 11.5 sacks.

North Dakota's Alex Tillman was named the First Team return specialist. Tillman, a senior transfer from the University of Houston, averaged 16.9 yards per punt return, including a 95-yarder for a touchdown against Portland State. He also averaged 18.8 yards per kick return.

Sacramento State junior Brad Cornish was selected as the kicker. Cornish made 14-of-17 field goals, with a long of 49 yards. He had 16 touchbacks on kickoffs, and made 56 of his 59 extra points.

UC Davis senior offensive tackle Ian Joseph rounded out the First Team.

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