NEW ORLEANS (FWAA) – The 2019 Football
Writers Association of America-Shaun Alexander Freshman All-America
Team presented by Stand Together features LSU cornerback
Derek Stingley Jr., who is playing in tonight's College Football
Playoff National Championship at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, two
other members of the FWAA All-America Team, and four teams which
have two players each on the 32-man list.
The Pac-12 Conference leads all conferences with six total selections,
led by a pair from Oregon and UCLA, the Big 12 is next with five
and the Atlantic Coast and Southeastern Conferences had four each.
Alabama and Purdue tie Oregon and UCLA for the most from one school.
All 10 FBS conferences and two independents are represented on the
Stingley Jr. is a consensus All-America selection and the most
decorated freshman in LSU's history. He was the 17th defensive true
freshman to start a season opener for the Tigers (14-0), who face
Clemson (14-0) for the national championship tonight at 8 p.m. ET
on ESPN. He leads the SEC and is in the top five nationally in both
interceptions (six, 5th nationally) and passes defended (21, 4th
nationally). The Baton Rouge, La., product started all 14 games
and is 10th on the team with 36 tackles – 30 of them solo – and
had at least one tackle for loss in 13 games. He also returns punts
and has 163 all-purpose yards, 146 of them on punt returns plus
17 more on interception returns. He is the grandson of the late
Darryl Stingley, a former NFL player whose pro career ended with
a spinal cord injury.
Miami defensive lineman Gregory Rousseau and Kansas State kick
returner Joshua Youngblood joined Stingley as members of the both the FWAA's Freshman
All-America Team and the FWAA All-America Team. Both were second-team
Rousseau, the ACC Defensive Rookie of the Year, finished
with 15.5 sacks and in a tie for the third-most sacks in a single
season for the Hurricanes. The redshirt freshman had 54 tackles
and 19.5 tackles for loss. Youngblood helped set the Kansas State
record with a 29.5-yard kickoff return average with a nation-leading
three returns for touchdowns.
Oregon is the only school with a tandem on the same side of the
ball. Defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux was second nationally among
freshmen with 9.0 sacks and third in tackles for loss with 14.0.
Free safety Verone McKinley III came on in the second half of the
season with four interceptions, tied for third nationally among
freshmen. UCLA has offensive tackle Sean Rhyan, the first Bruins
freshman to start a season-opener at offensive tackle in seven seasons,
and punt returner Kyle Phillips, who was second in the nation with
a 22.5-yard average.
Alabama middle linebacker Shane Lee moved into the starting lineup
after a season-ending injury to Dylan Moses and led all SEC freshmen
with 77 tackles and tied for fourth in the league with 5.5 tackles
for loss. Evan Neal started all 13 games for the Crimson Tide at
left guard, assisting on a line that gave up only 12 sacks in 381
pass attempts. Defensive end George Karlaftis was third on the Boilermakers'
defense with 54 total tackles (30 solo) with 17.0 tackles for loss
and 7.5 sacks – the TFL count was the most by a Purdue player since
2011, and the sack total the highest since 2010. Boilermakers wide
receiver David Bell, the Big Ten's Freshman of the Year, led the
conference with 86 receptions in the regular season for 1,035 yards
and seven touchdowns. Purdue has had a FWAA Freshman All-America
wide receiver in consecutive years following Rondale Moore last
North Carolina quarterback Sam Howell is one of two signal-callers
on the team. His 38 passing touchdowns are the most by a true freshman
in FBS history. The previous record was 30 from Clemson's Trevor
Lawrence, one of two quarterbacks on last year's FWAA Freshman All-America
Team. Kedon Slovis was USC's first quarterback to pass for 400 yards
four times in a season and ranks in the national top 20 in five
passing categories including yards, completions and touchdowns.
Both were their conference's Rookie (ACC) or Freshman Offensive
Player of the Year (Pac-12).
Running back Javian Hawkins is Louisville's first player to rush
for 1,500 yards, finishing with 1,525 yards and third on
the school's single-season rushing list. He had eight 100-yard
games. UTSA's Sincere McCormick finished with 1,177 all-purpose
yards to break the school's single-season record. His 983 rushing
yards were second all-time at UTSA.
Ohio State's Ryan Day is the First-Year Coach of the Year after
guiding the Buckeyes into their second College Football Playoff
with a 13-0 record and a Big Ten Championship. Ohio State closed
13-1 after falling to Clemson in a Fiesta Bowl semifinal classic,
but not before overseeing the nation's No. 1 defense, No. 4 scoring
defense, No. 5 offense and No. 1 scoring offense. He is Ohio State's
first Big Ten Coach of the Year since 1979.
The 13-person panel of nationally-prominent college football
experts represented each of the FBS conferences along with independents
in the selecting the team. Both true freshmen (20 players) and redshirt
freshmen (12 players) were considered for the team and are so noted
on the list below.
SHAUN ALEXANDER FWAA FRESHMAN ALL-AMERICA TEAM
||• Sam Howell, North Carolina
||Indian Trail, N.C.
||• Kedon Slovis, USC
||Javian Hawkins, Louisville
||• Sincere McCormick, UTSA
||• David Bell, Purdue
||• C.J. Johnson, East Carolina
||• Dante Wright, Colorado State
||• Ikem Ekwonu, N.C. State
||Travis Glover, Georgia State
||• Evan Neal, Alabama
||• Sean Rhyan, UCLA
||Ladera Beach, Calif.
||Nick Rosi, Toledo
||• O'Cyrus Torrence, Louisiana
||Solomon Byrd, Wyoming
||• George Karlaftis, Purdue
||West Lafayette, Ind.
||Gregory Rousseau, Miami
||Coconut Creek, Fla.
||• Kayvon Thibodeuax, Oregon
||Los Angeles, Calif.
||• Shane Lee, Alabama
||Azeez Ojulari, Georgia
||Devin Richardson, New Mexico State
||• Omar Speights, Oregon State
||• Ahmad Gardner, Cincinnati
||• Kyle Hamilton, Notre Dame
||Verone McKinley III, Oregon
||• Tykee Smith, West Virginia
||• Derek Stingley Jr., LSU
||Baton Rouge, La.
||Ar'Darius Washington, TCU
||• Austin McNamara, Texas Tech
||Gabe Brkic, Oklahoma
||• Joshua Youngblood, Kansas State
||Kyle Phillips, UCLA
||San Marcos, Calif.
||Kenneth Gainwell, Memphis
||Yazoo City, Miss.
|Ryan Day, Ohio State
About Shaun Alexander
Shaun Alexander is
a former All-Pro running back with the Seattle Seahawks (2000-07)
and Washington Redskins (2008) and a former All-SEC player at Alabama
(1995-99). He finished a four-year career with the Crimson Tide
holding 15 records including 3,565 career rushing yards and most
touchdowns (5) in a game. He was drafted by Seattle as the 19th
overall pick in the 2000 NFL Draft, and in his second season had
a breakout year with 1,318 yards and 14 touchdowns, including a
franchise-record 266 yards on 35 carries in a memorable ESPN Sunday
Night Football game against Oakland. Today Alexander travels the
country speaking and teaching people about the things he is passionate
about – his Christian faith, marriage, fatherhood, football, winning,
leading and love.
About Stand Together
The Stand Together Foundation
is committed to breaking the cycle of poverty by supporting the
creative solutions of individuals and organizations who are driving
dynamic entrepreneurship in communities across the country and helping
people transform their lives. Founded in 2016, the Foundation partners
with the nation's most effective and top-performing non-profits
to help them deepen and grow their impact through innovative solutions
to break barriers for people in poverty so that they can realize
Founded in 1941, the Football Writers Association of
America consists of 1,400 men and women who cover college
football. The membership includes journalists, broadcasters and
publicists, as well as key executives in all the areas that involve
the game. The FWAA works to govern areas that include game-day operations,
major awards and its annual All-America team. For more information
about the FWAA and its award programs, contact Steve Richardson
2019 FWAA Freshman All-America Committee:
Shaun Alexander; Mark Anderson, Las Vegas Review-Journal (MW);
Mark Blaudschun, TMGCollegeSports.com (ACC); Scott Dochterman,
The Athletic (Big Ten); Michael Griffith, Freshman Focus;
Mike Griffith, Atlanta Journal-Constitution
(Chair/Independents); Tommy Hicks, Freelance (Sun Belt); Ron
Higgins, Tiger Rag (SEC); Blair Kerkhoff, The Kansas City Star
(Big 12); Matt Murschel, Orlando Sentinel (American Athletic);
Nick Piotrowicz, Toledo Blade (MAC); Steve Richardson, FWAA;
Grant Traylor, Huntington Herald-Dispatch (Conference USA); Ryan
Young, Rivals.com (Pac-12).