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Football Leads The PFL With 10 Academic All-PFL Selections

Courtesy: Drake Athletics
         
Release: December 04, 2013
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SAINT LOUIS, Mo. – The Drake University football team led the Pioneer Football League with 10 student-athletes earning a spot on the Academic All-PFL teams. Dayton matched Drake’s total with 10 while San Diego checked in with seven honorees. In all, 50 PFL student-athletes were named to the All-Academic teams.

Drake had one student-athlete, junior quarterback Andy Rice (Stevens Point, Wis.) earn first team honors while the Bulldogs dominated the second team with a staggering nine honorees. To be eligible for Academic All-PFL consideration, a student-athlete must be a varsity starter or key reserve, maintain a cumulative grade-point average of 3.00 on a scale of 4.00 and reached their second season both athletically and academically at his current institution. Each team has a total of 25 members.

Rice earned first-team honors after a junior campaign that saw him throw for 2,801 yards with 21 touchdowns. He also ran for five scores as well. In the classroom, he boasts a 3.69 grade point average in marketing and management.

Drake’s second-team honorees included four offensive players, four defenders and a specialist.

On offensive, junior lineman Jack Beck (Whitefish Bay, Wis.) earned a spot on the team thanks to 3.63 GPA in his marketing coursework while blocking for an offense that averaged 364.6 yards per game. Fellow lineman Aaron Johnson (Iowa City, Iowa) was also named to the team thanks to a 3.43 GPA in the law, politics and society curriculum.  Senior wide receiver Jacob Dines (Osage Beach, Mo.) was one of just two PFL wide receivers on the second team after catching six passes for 93 yards while maintaining a 3.75 GPA in biology. Fifth-year senior tight end Kevin Marshall (Glen Ellyn, Ill.), an honorable mention All-PFL selection, was named to the All-Academic team with a 3.28 GPA in biochemistry, cell and molecular biology while hauling in 27 passes for 171 yards with two touchdowns despite being limited due to injury.

On defense, the Bulldogs’ linebackers and lineman combined to split the four honors between linebackers Taylor Coleman (Hawthorn Woods, Ill.) and Travis Merritt (Johnston, Iowa) and linemen Kolby Knuth (Appleton, Wis.) and Brandon Coleman (Cary, Ill.)

Brandon Coleman’s honor was the third of his career following a senior season in which he ranked fifth in the PFL in both sacks and tackles for loss with 9.0 and 12.5 respectively. Academically, he was a semifinalist for the Campbell Trophy – which hails itself as the academic Heisman – with a 3.65 GPA in secondary education. Knuth earned the first PFL All-Academic honor of his career by serving as the team’s primary reserve on the defensive line where he recorded 14 tackles, 2.0 sacks and 5.0 tackles for loss while earning a 3.70 GPA in accounting. Taylor Coleman emerged into an eventual starting role in his first active season with Bulldogs and made 21 tackles on the season while maintaining a perfect 4.0 GPA the law, politics and society program. The linebacker he understudied, Merritt, battled injuries all season after leading the defense in 2012. He finished the season with 13 tackles in six games but finished his Drake career with a 3.74 GPA in biology.

Junior kickoff specialist Spencer Lee (St. Louis, Mo.) also earned a spot on the second team with a 3.63 GPA in health sciences while kicking off 52 times for an average of 59.0 yards with 13 touchbacks.

The selection of the All-Academic team completes a week of postseason award announcements for the PFL. On Dec. 3, 11 Bulldogs were named to the All-PFL teams after the squad compiled a 6-5 record to finish with a winning record for the 10th consecutive season.

2013 Academic All-Pioneer Football League First Team

(as selected by PFL sports information directors)

Student-Athlete

School

Pos.

Class

Hometown

GPA

Major (Minor)

OFFENSE

Will Bardo (2)

Dayton

QB

Sr.

Ft. Thomas, Ky.

3.34

Mechanical Engineering

Ben Bolling (D)

Campbell

WR

R-So.

Knightdale, N.C.

3.31

Exercise & Sports Science

Trae Heeter (1)

Butler

RB

Sr.

Indianapolis, Ind.

3.37

Elementary Education

Grant Huckestein (1)

Dayton

RB

Sr.

Pittsburgh, Pa.

3.72

Mechanical Engineering

Matt Lancaster (1)

Butler

QB

Sr.

West Lafayette, Ind.

3.51

Chemistry

Mason Mills (1)

San Diego

QB

Sr.

Coronado, Calif.

3.29

Finance

Kurt Odom (3,1,D)

Campbell

RB

Sr.

Robbinsville, N.C.

3.96

Kinesiology

Andy Rice

Drake

QB

Jr.

Stevens Point, Wis.

3.69

Marketing/Management

Brendan Shannon (2)

Butler

WR

Sr.

Lombard, Ill.

3.43

Science And Technology

Hunter Somerville (D)

Campbell

TE

R-So.

Winston-Salem, N.C.

3.49

Criminal Justice

Ross Smith (D)

Dayton

WR

Sr.

Lewis Center, Ohio

3.53

Business

DEFENSE

Robbie Beathard (3,1,D)

San Diego

S

Sr.

San Diego, Calif.

3.78

Accountancy

Bryant Bednarek (D)

Davidson

DB

Jr.

Westerville, Ohio

3.37

Economics

JoJo Ciancio

Butler

DB

R-Jr.

Geneva, Ill.

3.87

Economics

Alexander Green

Valparaiso

LB

So.

Zionsville, Ind.

3.78

Mechanical Engineering

Danny Leach (D)

Dayton

S

So.

Downers Grove, Ill.

3.95

Double Major: Entrepreneurship/Marketing

Troy McClelland (1,D)

San Diego

LB

Jr.

San Diego, Calif.

3.85

Accountancy

Colin Merrill (D)

Davidson

DB

Jr.

Circleville, Ohio

3.40

Biology

Blake Oliaro (3,1,D)

San Diego

DE

Sr.

Folsom, Calif.

3.50

Mechanical Engineering (Chemistry)

Tyler Ramsey (D)

Marist

S

Sr.

Southbridge, Mass.

3.44

Business Administration

Aaron Riley (D)

Jacksonville

DL

Sr.

Jacksonville, Fla.

3.62

Sociology

Jayme Szafranski (1,D)

Butler

S

Sr.

Barrington, Ill.

3.84

Finance

SPECIAL TEAMS

Chris Gorman

Davidson

KOS

Sr.

Chagrin Falls, Ohio

3.90

Mathematics/Economics

Adam Lutz (2)

Campbell

P/K

Jr.

Waxhaw, N.C.

3.43

Graphic Design

William Will

Dayton

K

So.

Mokena, Ill.

3.46

Marketing

Notes in parentheses: 3 – player is a three-time first-team Academic All-PFL selection; 1-was a first-team selection in 2012; 2-was a first-team selection in 2012; D-Capital One First-Team Academic All-District Selection.

2013 Academic All-Pioneer Football League Second Team

(as selected by PFL sports information directors)

Student-Athlete

School

Pos.

Class

Hometown

GPA

Major (Minor)

OFFENSE

Stuart Barkley

Valparaiso

OL

Jr.

Overland Park, Kan.

3.65

Mechanical Engineering

Jack Beck

Drake

OL

Jr.

Whitefish Bay, Wis.

3.63

Marketing

Caleb Brown

Mercer

RB

R-Fr.

Fayetteville, Ga.

4.00

Psychology

Thomas Cobbs

San Diego

TE

Sr.

Irvine, Calif.

3.62

Finance

Chris Cortopassi

Dayton

OL

Sr.

Wheaton, Ill.

3.39

Double Major: Biology/Pre-Dentistry

Jacob Dines

Drake

WR

Sr.

Osage Beach, Mo.

3.75

Biology

Aaron Johnson

Drake

OL

Jr.

Iowa City, Iowa

3.43

Law Politics & Society

Kevin Marshall

Drake

TE

Sr.

Glen Ellyn, Ill.

3.28

Biochemistry Cell And Molecular Biology

Zac Morgan

Dayton

OL

So.

Mokena, Ill.

3.49

Double Major: Entrepreneurship/Accounting

John Russ

Mercer

QB

R-Fr.

Buford, Ga.

3.71

Sports Management

Cory Stuart

Dayton

WR

So.

Solon, Ohio

3.77

Pre-Physical Therapy

DEFENSE

Kyle Annis

Butler

DT

R-So.

Hilliard, Ohio

3.59

Actuarial Science

Christopher Beaschler

Dayton

LB

So.

Ada, Ohio

3.67

Mechanical Engineering

Michael Ruffino

San Diego

LB

Sr.

Napa, Calif.

3.35

Electrical Engineering

Brandon Coleman

Drake

DL

Sr.

Cary, Ill.

3.65

Secondary Education

Taylor Coleman

Drake

LB

So.

Hawthorn Woods, Ill.

4.00

Law Politics & Society

Kolby Knuth

Drake

DL

Sr.

Appleton, Wis.

3.70

Accounting

Clint Johnson

San Diego

DL

Sr.

Wheatland, Calif.

3.56

History

Travis Merritt

Drake

LB

Sr.

Johnston, Iowa

3.74

Biology

Colin Monnier

Dayton

LB

Sr.

Chicago, Ill.

3.48

Pre-Medicine

Mike Rudisill

Campbell

LB

R-Sr.

Charlotte, N.C.

3.61

Psychology

Lucas Smith

Campbell

DL

R-Jr.

Lebanon, Va.

3.70

Physical Education

SPECIAL TEAMS

Rob East

Mercer

P

R-Fr.

Dublin, Ga.

3.93

Accounting

Spencer Lee

Drake

K/P

Jr.

St. Louis, Mo.

3.63

Health Sciences/Management

 2013 Academic All-PFL

Team Breakdown

Team

TOTAL

1ST

2ND

Butler

6

5

1

Campbell

6

4

2

Davidson

3

3

0

Dayton

10

5

5

Drake

10

1

9

Jacksonville

1

1

0

Marist

2

1

1

Mercer

3

0

3

Morehead State

0

0

0

San Diego

7

4

3

Stetson

0

0

0

Valparaiso

2

1

1

TOTAL

50

25

25

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