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SWAC 2009 Football Preseason Selections announced

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July 21, 2009

BIRMINGHAM - The Southwestern Athletic Conference announced its 2009 Football Preseason Honors Tuesday, headlined by Southern QB Bryant Lee voted the Preseason Offensive Player of the Year, and Grambling State DL Christian Anthony voted Preseason Defensive Player of the Year. Grambling State, the 2008 SWAC Champion, was picked to repeat.

All preseason honors and predicted order of finish were voted on by the league’s coaches, sports information departments and selected members of the media.

Lee, the 2008 SWAC Offensive Player of the Year and first team-all-SWAC selection, led the SWAC in completions (217), attempts (352), passing yards (2,682) and touchdown passes (20) while throwing just seven interceptions. Lee was seventh in the conference and second in rushing yards among quarterbacks with 534 yards (on 139 attempts) with six touchdowns. Lee had four games of at least 300 yards passing (including one 400-yard game), and posted back-to-back games where he accounted for at least five touchdowns.

Anthony was a first-team all-SWAC selection in 2008 and the Defensive Most Valuable Player of the SWAC Football Championship game. Last season he posted 55 tackles (17 for loss) and eight sacks for the SWAC and HBCU National Champions. Anthony was tied for fourth in the league in sacks last season and was sixth in the Conference in tackles for loss. In the SWAC Championship game, Anthony posted seven tackles (three for loss), two sacks and two QB hurries in the win over Jackson State.

Grambling State was picked to repeat as SWAC Champions. GSU, the two-time reigning Western Division champs, has played in back-to-back title games, and last year avenged a 2007 SWAC Championship Game loss to Jackson State.

Jackson State, winners of the Eastern Division crown in each of the past two seasons, was picked to defend its division title.

There were 21 players named to this year’s preseason all-conference team that earned 2008 postseason honors: WR Thomas Harris, DE Jeremy Maddox, OL Xavier Manual, and K Jeremy Licea (Alabama A&M), Anthony, CB Kenneth Anio, QB Greg Dillon, OL Revay Smith, and RB Cornelius Walker (Grambling State), OL Mikeal Harshaw, DB Malcolm Palmer and K Eric Perri (Jackson State), RB Donald Babers, DB Anthony Beck, OL James Delke, and DL Quinton Spears (Prairie View A&M), Lee and WR Juamorris Stewart (Southern), WR William Osbourne and DB DE’Markus Washington (Texas Southern), and DB Kevin Thornton (Univ. Arkansas-Pine Bluff).

The 2009 SWAC Championship Game will be played Saturday, December 12 in Birmingham, AL at Legion Field.

2009 SWAC Preseason All-Conference Selections
First-Team Offense Ht Wt Cl Hometown
OL Mikeal Harshaw Jackson State 6-4 310 Sr. Memphis, TN
OL Xavier Manual Alabama A&M 6-1 307 Sr. Vinegar Bend, AL
OL James Dekle Prairie View A&M 6-2 285 Jr. Miami, FL
OL Revay Smith Grambling State 6-1 305 Sr. Port Allen, LA
OL Ramon Chinyoung Southern 6-1 295 Sr. Houston, TX
TE Andrew Thomas Texas Southern 6-2 210 Sr. Germantown, MD
WR Juamorris Stewart Southern 6-3 195 Sr. Baton Rouge, LA
WR Thomas Harris Alabama A&M 6-0 210 Sr. Alexander City, AL
RB Donald Babers Prairie View A&M 5-9 170 Jr. Houston, TX
RB Mickey Dean Univ. Arkansas-Pine Bluff 5-10 215 Sr. Little Rock, AR
QB Bryant Lee Southern 6-2 195 Sr. Boutte, LA
K Jeremy Licea Alabama A&M 5-7 147 Sr. Ventura, CA

First-Team Defense
DL Christian Anthony Grambling 6-4 246 Sr. Birmingham, AL
DL Jeremy Maddox Alabama A&M 6-0 244 Sr. Grand Bay, AL
DL Sam Washington Jackson State 6-4 265 Sr. Lexington, MS
DL Quinton Spears Prairie View A&M 6-4 220 Sr. Montgomery, TX
LB Dejuan Fulgham Texas Southern 6-1 220 Jr. Killeen, TX
LB Rory Malone Mississippi Valley State 5-10 225 Jr. Mesquite, TX
LB Adrian Hardy Alabama State 6-2 197 Sr. Selma, TX
DB Anthony Beck Prairie View A&M 6-2 205 Sr. Channelview, TX
DB Kenneth Anio Grambling State 6-0 180 Jr. Jackson, LA
DB Rechard Johnson Alabama State 5-11 190 Sr. Montgomery, AL
DB De’Markus Washington Texas Southern 5-9 160 So. Dallas, TX
P Pedro Ventura Prairie View A&M 5-9 170 Jr Houston, TX
RS William Osbourne Texas Southern 5-8 162 Sr. Marshall, TX

Second-Team Offense
OL Charles Smith Texas Southern 6-5 325 Jr. Largo, MD
OL James Blanton Prairie View A&M 6-7 335 Jr. Clute, TX
OL Colton Jones Univ. Arkansas-Pine Bluff 6-2 280 So. Arlington, TX
OL Robert Ogletree Mississippi Valley State 6-2 290 Sr Birmingham, AL
OL Lee Almanza Southern 6-4 300 So. Houston, TX
TE Marlon Allen Prairie View A&M 6-2 245 Sr. Stafford, TX
WR William Osbourne Texas Southern 5-8 162 Sr. Marshall, TX
WR Brandon Stargell Mississippi Valley State 6-2 195 Jr. Pine Bluff, AR
RB Ulysses Banks Alabama A&M 5-8 172 Sr. Birmingham, AL
RB Cornelius Walker Grambling State 5-10 170 Jr. Atlanta, GA
QB Greg Dillon Grambling State 6-0 200 Jr. Bogalusa, LA
K Eric Perri Jackson State 5-8 155 Sr. Miami, FL

Second-Team Defense
DL Jared Dorn Univ. Arkansas-Pine Bluff 6-3 255 Sr. Pine Bluff, AR
DL Malcolm Taylor Alcorn State 6-3 242 Sr. Brooksville, MS
DL Dexter James Southern 6-4 275 Sr. Brusly, LA
DL Chris Ivy Mississippi Valley State 6-2 220 Sr. Louisville, MS
LB Allan Baugh Southern 6-0 235 Sr. Houston, TX
LB Michael Weatherspoon Univ. Arkansas-Pine Bluff 6-3 225 Sr. Little Rock, AR
LB Marcus Jamison Jackson State 6-1 225 Sr. Brooksville, MS
DB Kevin Thornton Univ. Arkansas-Pine Bluff 6-1 210 Sr. Little Rock, AR
DB Malcolm Palmer Jackson State 5-11 180 Sr. Autaugville, AL
DB Michael Higgins Mississippi Valley State 6-3 195 Sr. Greenwood, MS
DB Marcel Young Jackson State 6-2 200 Sr. Jackson, MS
P Josh Duran Southern 5-9 180 Jr. Eunice, LA
RS Mareo Howard Univ. Arkansas-Pine Bluff 5-9 180 Jr. Fort Valley, GA

Preseason Offensive Player of the Year
QB Bryant Lee Southern 6-2 195 Sr. Boutte, LA

Preseason Defensive Player of the Year
DL Christian Anthony Grambling State 6-4 246 Sr. Birmingham, AL

Coaches’ Predicted Order of Finish
(first place votes in parentheses)
Eastern Division Western Division
Jackson State (13)
103 pts
Grambling State (14)
104 pts
Alabama A&M (8)
95
Southern (5)
86
Alabama State
56
Prairie View A&M (3)
76
Mississippi Valley State
46
Texas Southern
43
Alcorn State (2)
45
Univ. Arkansas-Pine Bluff (1)
36

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