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The 2013 college football season is upon us, meaning it's time to unveil the 2013 Boxtorow Preseason All-America Team.  The talent on the team is tremendous.From the Pressbox to Pressrow

Bethune-Cookman teammates Isidore Jackson and LeBrandon Richardson along with Alabama State running back Isaiah Crowell and Mississippi Valley State defensive lineman Robert Simpson are just four players who highlight the team.

Tennessee State led the way with five selections, while Bethune-Cookman had four and Arkansas-Pine Bluff landed three.

The voters are comprised of writers and media members who cover HBCU football.

Arkansas-Pine Bluff’s Benjamin Anderson was selected as the quarterback.

The 2013 SWAC Preseason Offensive Player of the Year received first team All-SWAC accolades in 2012 after leading the Golden Lions to the SWAC championship and a No.1 ranking in the final Boxtorow coaches poll.

Anderson was second in the SWAC in passing yards (2,346), completing 58 percent of his passes with 16 touchdowns.  He also rushed for 519 yards and five touchdowns.

Jackson and Crowell were the overwhelming favorites in the backfield.

Jackson rushed for 1,069 yards, averaging 5.6 yards per carry and 11 touchdowns.  Jackson was named first team All-MEAC in 2012 and has been named the MEAC Preseason Co-Offensive Player of the Year.  Crowell, who was named first team All-SWAC last year, was third in the SWAC in rushing (842) and led the SWAC in rushing touchdowns (15), while averaging 5.3 yards per carry.

The offensive line is massive averaging 6’5, 312 pounds.  The line includes Chris Bearden of Winston-Salem State, Kenny Eagle of Arkansas-Pine Bluff, Kadeem Edwards of Tennessee State, Joshua Matthews of Howard, and Christopher Tolbert of Tuskegee.

The wide receivers include two of the top pass catchers in the SWAC.

LaDarius Eckwood of Arkansas-Pine Bluff recorded 52 receptions for 787 yards and six touchdowns, averaging 15.1 yards per reception for the SWAC champions a year ago.  Southern’s Lee Doss caught 65 passes for 696 yards and eight touchdowns last year.

2012 Boxtorow All-American and first team All-OVC performer A.C. Leonard had one of the best seasons of any tight end in the country last year.

Leonard caught 51 passes for 730 yards and six touchdowns while averaging 14.4 yards per reception.

Defensively, linemen Richardson and Simpson received the most votes.

Richardson, a 2012 Boxtorow All-American, tied for the MEAC lead in sacks (8.5), while recording 13 tackles for loss and 53 tackles (30 solo).

Simpson had as dominant a year as any lineman, helping the Delta Devils to the fourth best total defense in the nation.  He was second in the country in tackles for loss (29) for losses totaling 121 yards which led the nation.  He also recorded nine sacks, the third most in the SWAC.

Joining Richardson and Simpson on the defensive line is Antonio Harper of Tennessee State and Damon Gresham-Chisolm of Howard.  Harper had 36 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss and four sacks.  Gresham-Chisolm was the 2012 Boxtorow Rookie of the Year and led the MEAC with 18 tackles for loss while recording five sacks and 41 tackles (28 solo) on his way to first team All-MEAC honors.

The voting at the linebacker position was close and emerging was Carlos Fields of Winston-Salem State, Jarkevis Fields of Bethune-Cookman, and Nick Thrasher of Tennessee State.  Carlos Fields was the 2012 CIAA Defensive Player of the Year and a Boxtorow All-American.  He led the CIAA in tackles (119), recorded nine tackles for loss, two interceptions, seven pass breakups, and two forced fumbles as the leader of one of the nation’s best defenses.  Jarkevis Fields is the MEAC’s Preseason Defensive Player of the Year.  He recorded 103 tackles, which was third in the MEAC, six tackles for loss and had five games where he recorded 10 or more tackles.

Thrasher was third in the OVC in tackles (105), nine of those for loss.

The defensive backfield voting was even closer than the linebacker voting; so close that five players are on the unit.  This position is one of the deepest in recent memory.

North Carolina A&T’s D'Vonte Graham was named first team All-MEAC and Boxtorow All-American a year ago after recording four interceptions, eight pass breakups and 18 tackles.  Another 2012 Boxtorow All-American was Jackson State cornerback Qua Cox who led the SWAC in interceptions (5) and had eight pass breakups.  Nick Addison of Bethune-Cookman was first team All-MEAC in 2012.  He tied for third in the MEAC with four interceptions, recorded seven pass breakups and 68 tackles (37 solo).  Tennessee State cornerback Stephen Godbolt, III has been named OVC Preseason Defensive Player of the Year.  Godbolt led the nation in interceptions per game (.6), finishing with six and six pass breakups.  Dexter Moody was a 2012 Boxtorow All-American and led the SIAC in interceptions (7), returning two for touchdowns.  He also recorded 48 tackles (30 solo) and three sacks.

Two of the three specialists were 2012 Boxtorow All-Americans.  Chase Varnadore of Florida A&M is the place kicker and was one of the most accurate place kickers in the MEAC, connecting on 15-of-18 field goals.

Punter Bobby Wenzig of Alabama State led the SWAC and was fourth in the country in punting average (45.6).  He had 20 punts of 50 or more yards and 24 downed inside the 20.

Graham was also named preseason All-American as a return specialist.

Graham averaged a league leading 12.4 yards per return including one return for a touchdown.

This is the seventh year of the Boxtorow preseason All-American team.

2013 Boxtorow Preseason All-America Team

QB: Benjamin Anderson, Arkansas-Pine Bluff, 6-3, 205, r-Jr., Little Rock,Ark.
RB: Isaiah Crowell, Alabama State, 5-11, 215, Jr., Columbus, Ga.
RB: Isidore Jackson, Bethune-Cookman, 5-10, 195, r-Sr., Mossy Head, Fla.
OL: Chris Bearden, Winston-Salem State,  6-7, 315, Sr., Decatur, Ga.
OL: Kenny Eagle, Arkansas-Pine Bluff, 6-4, 305, Sr., Knox, Ind.
OL:  Kadeem Edwards, Tennessee State, 6-4, 290, Sr., Sanford, Fla.
OL:  Joshua Matthews, Howard, 6-4, 330, Sr., Bowman, S.C.
OL:  Christopher Tolbert, Tuskegee, 6-7, 320, Sr., Birmingham, Ala.
TE:  A.C. Leonard, Tennessee State, 6-4, 245, Jr., Jacksonville, Fla.*
WR: Lee Doss, Southern, 6-2, 170, r-Jr., New Orleans, La.
WR: LaDarius Eckwood, Arkansas-Pine Bluff, 6-1, 185, r-Sr., Springdale, Ark.

DL: Damon Gresham Chisholm, Howard, 6-3, 249, Soph., Covington, Ga.$
DL: Antonio Harper, Tennessee State, 6-3, 2245, r-Sr., Memphis, Tenn.
DL: LeBrandon Richardson, Bethune-Cookman, 6-2, 255, Jr., Miami, Fla.*
DL: Robert Simpson, Mississippi Valley St., 6-4, 255, Sr., Gulfport, Miss.
LB: Carlos Fields, II, Winston-Salem St., 6-1, 220, Sr., Henderson, N.C.*
LB: Jarkevis Fields, Bethune-Cookman, 6-0, 230, r-Sr., Sanford, Fla.
LB: Nick Thrasher, Tennessee State, 6-2, 240, Jr., Morrow, Ga.
DB: Nick Addison, Bethune-Cookman, 6-2, 180, Jr., Tampa, Fla.
DB: Qua Cox, Jackson State, 6-0, 185, r-Sr., Tuskegee, Ala *
DB: Steven Godbolt, III, Tennessee State, 6-1, 180, r-Sr., Cross City, Fla.
DB: D'Vonte Graham, North Carolina A&T, 5-9, 180, Sr., Tallahassee, Fla.*
DB: Dexter Moody, Albany State, 6-3, 200, Sr., Twin City, Ga.*

PK: Chase Varnadore, Florida A&M, 5-11, 170, r-Soph., Tallahassee, Fla.*
P: Bobby Wenzig, Alabama State, 6-2, 180, Sr., San Diego, Calif.*
RS: D'Vonte Graham, North Carolina A&T, 5-9, 180, Sr., Tallahassee, Fla.

*2012 Boxtorow All-American
$2012 Boxtorow Rookie of the Year


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