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Courtesy: SWAC.org

SWAC FOOTBALL ALL-CONFERENCE PRESEASON TEAMS RELEASED

Courtesy: SWAC.org
Release: 07/14/2017
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. –  The Southwestern Athletic Conference released its 2017 SWAC Preseason Teams Friday with 14 players from defending SWAC Champion and Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl winner Grambling State being tabbed for the most individual honors. 

The teams were announced during SWAC Football Media Day at the newly renovated Birmingham Marriott after ballots were cast by the league’s head coaches and sports information directors.

49 players were named to this year’s preseason teams, with several returning players that earned SWAC All-Conference honors at the conclusion of the 2016 season. Should a player that was named to the first team in the postseason awards not return, the second-team player for that position was elevated to the first team. Players were ranked in their position based upon the number of votes received.  Ballots required voters to rank their selections in order.  After helping lead the Tigers to a conference-best 11-win season, Grambling State quarterback Devante Kincade was the voters’ choice for the SWAC Preseason Offensive Player of the Year award.  In 2016, Kincade completed 63 percent of his passes and threw for 3,022 yards with 31 touchdowns against just four interceptions. 

Jackson State defensive end Keontre Anderson was tabbed as the SWAC Preseason Defensive Player of the Year after leading the nation with 25.5 tackles for a loss to go along with nine sacks and six hurries. 

Prairie View A&M had the second most selections with eight including four first teamers.  Alcorn State and Southern were tied for the third most amount of selections with seven apiece (four first team selections each) while Alabama A&M garnered five selections.  Jackson State nabbed three spots, Alabama State and Mississippi Valley State each had two representatives while Texas Southern and Arkansas-Pine Bluff had one selection apiece. 

Joining Kincade on the preseason first-team offense are: running backs Martez Carter (Grambling State) and Jordan Bentley (Alabama A&M), offensive linemen Trent Scott (Grambling State), Donovan Wheaton (Prairie View A&M), Timothy Gardner (Alcorn State), William Waddell (Grambling State), and Sam Baptiste (Alabama State), wide receivers KhaDarel Hodge (Prairie View A&M) and Devohn Lindsey (Grambling State) and tight end Dillon Beard (Southern).  Joining Anderson on the preseason first-team defense are: defensive linemen Aaron Tiller (Southern), Michael Brooks (Alcorn State), and DeVohn Reed (Prairie View A&M), linebackers Kenneth Davis (Alabama A&M), Sean Jones (Texas Southern), De’Arius Christmas (Grambling State), and defensive backs Danny Johnson (Southern), Everett Nicholas (Mississippi Valley State), Tere Calloway (Alabama A&M) and Derrick Dixon (Grambling State). Kicker Nick Carden (Alabama A&M), punter Owen Hoolihan and Martez Carter (Grambling State) were each tabbed as first team selections for special teams.  Carter was the only player to double as a first team selection at separate positions (also made first team as a running back). 

East Division defending champion Alcorn State totaled 80 points as it was named the preseason favorite to win the East. Alabama State was selected to finish in second with 66 points, Jackson State received 59 points, followed by Alabama A&M (45) and Mississippi Valley State (20). In the West Division, reigning SWAC champion and Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl winner Grambling State was chosen as the overall favorite after amassing a conference-best 85 points in the voting.  Southern was selected second after it received 68 points. Prairie View A&M followed closely in third place with 59 points while Texas Southern (37) and Arkansas Pine Bluff (21) rounded out the order of predicted finish.

Preseason Offensive Player of the Year: Devante Kincade (QB) – Grambling State

Preseason Defensive Player of the Year: Keontre Anderson (DL) – Jackson State

2017 Preseason All-SWAC Football Team

FIRST TEAM

OFFENSE

QB

Devante Kincade

Grambling State

RB

Martez Carter

Grambling State

RB

Jordan Bentley

Alabama A&M

OL

Trent Scott

Grambling State

OL

Donovan Wheaton

Prairie View A&M

OL

Timothy Gardner

Alcorn State

OL

William Waddell

Grambling State

OL

Sam Baptiste

Alabama State

WR

KhaDarel Hodge

Prairie View A&M

WR

Devohn Lindsey

Grambling State

TE

Dillon Beard

Southern

 

DEFENSE

DL

Keontre Anderson

Jackson State

DL

 Aaron Tiller

Southern

DL

Michael Brooks

Alcorn State

DL

DeVohn Reed

Prairie View A&M

LB

Kenneth Davis

Alabama A&M

LB

Sean Jones

Texas Southern

LB

De’Arius Christmas

Grambling State

DB

Danny Johnson

Southern

DB

Everett Nicholas

Mississippi Valley State

DB

Tere Calloway

Alabama A&M

DB

Derrick Dixon

Grambling State

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

K

Nick Carden

Alabama A&M

P

Owen Hoolihan

Prairie View A&M

RS

Martez Carter

Grambling State

 

SECOND TEAM

OFFENSE

QB

Austin Howard

Southern

RB

Sta’Fon McCray

Prairie View A&M

RB

De’Lance Turner

Alcorn State

OL

Skylar Prol

Southern

OL

Deonte Brooks

Alcorn State

OL

Vincent Hunter

Jackson State

OL

Austin Simmons

Alabama A&M

OL

Alvin Solomon

Mississippi Valley State

WR

Norlando Veals

Alcorn State

WR

Darius Floyd

Prairie View A&M

TE

Jordan Jones

Grambling State

 

DEFENSE

 DL

Christopher Johnson

Grambling State

 DL

James Harper

Prairie View A&M

 DL

Brandon Varner

Grambling State

 DL

Ramonte Bell

Alcorn State

 LB

Kentavious Preston

Southern

 LB

Malcolm Williams

Grambling State

 LB

Shawn Bishop

Jackson State

 DB

Ja’Terious Pouncy

Grambling State

 DB

O.J. O’Neal

Alcorn State

 DB

Jamar Mitchell

Southern

 DB

Percy Cargo

Grambling State

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

K

Trevor Vincent

Alabama State

P

Jamie Gillan

Arkansas-Pine Bluff

RS

Joshua Simmons

Prairie View A&M

2017 Eastern Division Predicted Order of Finish

School

Points

Alcorn State

80

Alabama State

66

Jackson State

59

Alabama A&M

45

Mississippi Valley State

20

2017 Western Division Predicted Order of Finish

School

Points

Grambling State

85

Southern

68

Prairie View A&M

59

Texas Southern

37

Arkansas-Pine Bluff

21

 

 

 

 

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