Stockstill, McCoy win top SBC honors

11 earn all-conference honors

December 9, 2009 · Athletic Communications

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - Middle Tennessee Head Coach Rick Stockstill and defensive end Chris McCoy grabbed two of the top three honors as the All-Sun Belt Conference teams were announced today. Voting was done by the league coaches and media representatives.

Stockstill was named Co-Coach of the Year, an award he shared with Troy's Larry Blakeney. Stockstill's team was picked to finish fourth in the SBC in pre-season polls, but wound up in second place, and closed the season with a six-game winning streak and a bid to play in the R&L Carriers New Orleans Bowl.

For Stockstill, it was his second Coach of the Year award in his four years at Middle Tennessee. He won it outright in 2006.

"I am very humbled and appreciative of this honor but it is a direct reflection of our players and coaching staff," said Stockstill.

McCoy was named the Co-Defensive Player of the Year, along with ULM linebacker Cardia Jackson. McCoy had 59 tackles, 20 of them for losses, seven sacks, three pass breakups, a blocked kick and two fumble recoveries, one of which he returned 68 yards for a touchdown.

He is the first Blue Raider to be named Defensive Player of the Year since Jeff Littlejohn in 2005.

Six MTSU players were honored with First Team All-Sun Belt Conference designations for their efforts during the 2009 season. Five Blue Raiders earned Second Team All-SBC honors, while two more made Honorable Mention. Seventeen MTSU players have now earned First Team honors under Stockstill and the six this year are the most since 2006, when seven Blue Raiders were on the First Team.

"Each individual recognized for all-conference was very deserving," added Stockstill. "They all had outstanding seasons and it is a credit to their teammates who played a major role in each player's success throughout the season.

"I am very proud of the six seniors who were honored. They can finish their career with a great season, a bowl game, and all-conference recognition."

The 11 All-Conference honors equals the second most in SBC history, tying the mark set in 2001, and one behind the record of 12 set in 2006.

In addition to McCoy, Middle Tennessee landed five others on the First Team. Senior Center Mark Thompson was named as an offensive lineman, while a trio of McCoy's defensive mates also made First Team All-SBC. They are seniors Alex Suber and Marcus Udell, and junior Jeremy Kellem, who made up three-fourths of the All-SBC defensive backfield.

Thompson headed up a young, but veteran offensive line as the only senior. At center, it was his job to make the calls for the offensive line, who paved the way for an offense that racked up over 5,000 yards of total offense. Thompson also established a Middle Tennessee record by playing in 49 games during his four-year career.

Blue Raider cornerbacks Suber and Udell had great senior seasons. Suber is considered the best shut-down corner in the league, while Udell's seven interceptions led the Sun Belt and put him among the nation's leaders in that category. Kellem, a safety with a nose for the ball, had 55 tackles, including 6.5 for losses, three sacks, three interceptions for 58 yards and a touchdown, two forced fumbles, one recovered fumble and two blocked kicks.

The sixth Blue Raider was sophomore place-kicker Alan Gendreau, who led the league in kick scoring with 98 points, and was second overall. He hit 18 of 21 field goal attempts, including a school-record 12 in a row, and missed only once in 45 extra point attempts.

Second team honors went to QB Dwight Dasher, OL Mark Fisher, DE Jamari Lattimore, and linebackers Danny Carmichael and Cam Robinson. Carmichael and Robinson are seniors, while the others are juniors.

Dasher pulled the trigger on Tony Franklin's wide-open offense, ranking second in the league in both total offense (3,580 yards) and passing (2,627, 21 TDs) and fourth in rushing (953 yards and 11 touchdowns). Fisher, like Thompson, is a multi-year starter in the offensive line that paved the way for Dasher and others.

Lattimore emerged as a strong defensive player this season, with 46 tackles, 9.5 tackles for loss and 5.5 sacks. He also recovered three fumbles and returned an interception 20 yards for a touchdown.

Carmichael led the conference and was nationally-ranked in forced fumbles with six. He also had 87 tackles, 12.5 tackles for a loss, and 6.5 sacks.

Robinson led the team in tackles with 104, 13 of them for losses, and five sacks. He also had two pass breakups and recovered a fumble.

Honorable Mention honors went to seniors Desmond Gee and Brandon Perry. Gee was named as a kickoff return specialist, while Perry was honored as a defensive lineman.

The final game of the season will be the New Orleans Bowl on Dec. 20th. Middle Tennessee will play Southern Miss.

2009 Sun Belt Conference Honors

Player of the Year
Levi Brown (Troy, Sr., QB)

Offensive Player of the Year
Levi Brown (Troy, Sr., QB)

Co-Defensive Players of the Year
Cardia Jackson (Louisiana-Monroe, Sr., LB)
Chris McCoy (Middle Tennessee, Sr., DL)

Freshman of the Year
Shawn Southward (Troy, Fr., RB)

Co-Coaches of the Year
Rick Stockstill, Middle Tennessee
Larry Blakeney, Troy

First Team All-Sun Belt Conference Offense
Levi Brown (Troy, Sr., QB)
Alfred Morris (Florida Atlantic, R-So., RB)
Lance Dunbar (North Texas, So., RB)
LaGregory Sapp (Louisiana-Monroe, Sr., WR)
Jerrel Jernigan (Troy, Jr., WR)
Jason Harmon (Florida Atlantic, R-Sr., TE)
Brad Bustle (Louisiana-Lafayette, Sr., G)
Chris Fisher (Louisiana-Lafayette, Sr., OL)
Mark Thompson (Middle Tennessee, Sr., OL)
Danny Franks (Troy, Sr., OL)
Tyler Clark (Troy, Jr., OL)

First Team All-Sun Belt Conference Defense
Alex Carrington (Arkansas State, Sr. DL)
Aaron Morgan (Louisiana-Monroe, Sr., DL)
Chris McCoy (Middle Tennessee, Sr., DL)
Brandon Lang (Troy, Sr., DL)
Cardia Jackson (Louisiana-Monroe, Sr., LB)
Boris Lee (Troy, Sr., LB)
Bear Woods (Troy, Sr., LB)
Greg James (Louisiana-Monroe, Sr., DB)
Jeremy Kellem (Middle Tennessee, Jr., DB)
Alex Suber (Middle Tennessee, Sr., DB)
Marcus Udell (Middle Tennessee, Sr., DB)

First Team All-Sun Belt Conference Specialists
Alan Gendreau (Middle Tennessee, So., PK)
Spencer Ortego (Louisiana-Lafayette, Jr., P)
T.Y. Hilton (FIU, So., Return Specialist)
Jerrel Jernigan (Troy, Jr., All Purpose)
Second Team All-Sun Belt Conference Offense
Dwight Dasher (Middle Tennessee, Jr., QB)
Frank Goodin (Louisiana-Monroe, Jr., RB)
Bobby Rainey (WKU, So., RB)
T.Y. Hilton (FIU, So., WR/KR)
Jamaal Jackson (North Texas, Jr. WR)
Ladarius Green (Louisiana-Lafayette, So., TE)
Derek Newton (Arkansas State, Jr., OL)
David Matlock (Florida Atlantic, R-Sr., OL)
Brad Serirni (FIU, Jr., OL)
Esteban Santiago (North Texas, Jr., OL)
Mark Fisher (Middle Tennessee, Jr., OL)

Second Team All-Sun Belt Conference Defense
Bryan Hall (Arkansas State, Jr., DL)
Jamari Lattimore (Middle Tennessee, Jr., DL)
Cameron Sheffield (Troy, Sr., DL)
Kevin Dixon (Troy, Sr., DL)
Antwyne Zanders (Louisiana-Lafayette, Sr., LB)
Danny Carmichael (Middle Tennessee, Sr., LB)
Cam Robinson (Middle Tennessee, Sr., LB)
Anthony Gaitor (FIU, Jr., DB)
James Truxillo (Louisiana-Monroe, Sr., DB)
Courtland Fuller (Troy, Sr., DB)
Bryan Willis (Troy, Fr., DB)
Second Team All-Sun Belt Conference Specialists
Josh Arauco (Arkansas State, Sr., PK)
Carlos Munera (FIU, Sr., P)
Jerrel Jernigan (Troy, Jr., Return Specialist)
Bobby Rainey (WKU, So., All Purpose)

Honorable Mention All-Sun Belt Conference
Corey Leonard (Arkansas State, Sr., QB); Daylan Walker (Arkansas State, Sr., DB); Kevin Cyrille (Florida Atlantic, R-So., DL); Marcus Bartels (Florida Atlantic, R-So., DB); Scott Bryant (FIU, Sr., LB); Jonathan Cyprien (FIU, Fr., DB); Dwight Bentley (Louisiana-Lafayette, So., DB); Grant Fleming (Louisiana-Lafayette, Jr., LB); Luther Ambrose (Louisiana-Monroe, So., All Purpose); Josh Thomas (Louisiana-Monroe, Sr., LB); Brandon Perry (Middle Tennessee, Sr., DL); Desmond Gee (Middle Tennessee, Sr., RS); Kelvin Drake (North Texas, Jr., OL); Craig Robertson (North Texas, Jr., LB); Tebiarus Gill (Troy, Jr., WR); Will Goggans (Troy, So., P); Jake Gaebler (WKU, Sr., WR); Jeremy Moore (WKU, Sr., P)

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