AFCA Announces 2014 NAIA Coaches' All-America Team

Morningside running back Brandon Wegher and Concordia (Mich.) linebacker Takari Johnson headline the 2014 AFCA NAIA Coaches’ All-America Team announced today by the American Football Coaches Association.

The AFCA has selected an All-America team since 1945 and currently selects teams in all five of its divisions. What makes these teams so special is that they are the only ones chosen exclusively by the men who know the players the best — the coaches themselves.

Wegher led the nation in rushing with 2,610 yards, averaging 200.8 yards per game. He also led the nation in rushing touchdowns with 39 and, along with his four receiving touchdowns, accounted for 20 points a game. Johnson led the nation in sacks, with 15.5 in the season. Johnson’s 39.5 tackles for loss, seven forced fumbles and 194 total tackles also led the nation in their respective categories.

2014 AFCA NAIA Coaches’ All-America Team
Offense

Pos. Name Ht. Wt. Cl. School Coach Hometown (High School)
WR Greg Livingston 5-10 185 Sr. Belhaven (Miss.) Hal Mumme Houston, Texas (Spring)
WR *Andre McCullouch 6-1 195 Jr. Rocky Mountain (Mont.) Brian Armstrong Riverside, Calif. (Martin Luther King)
WR Brady Roland 6-1 170 Sr. Grand View (Iowa) Mike Woodley Carlisle, Iowa (Carlisle)
OL Tanner Paxton 6-5 280 Sr. Hastings (Neb.) Tony Harper Lincoln, Neb. (Lincoln North Star)
OL David Stochlin 6-1 308 Sr. Benedictine (Kan.) Larry Wilcox Miami, Fla. (Miami Edison)
OL Zac Woods 6-3 300 Sr. Dakota State (S.D.) Josh Anderson Cherokee, Iowa (Washington)
OL Kenny Smith 6-1 280 Sr. St. Francis (Ill.) Joe Curry Minooka, Ill. (Minooka)
OL Zach Mitchell 6-3 300 Jr. Marian (Ind.) Mark Henninger Indianapolis, Ind. (Decatur Central)
QB Austin Dodge 6-3 210 Sr. Southern Oregon Craig Howard Vancouver, Wash. (Skyview)
RB Lamont Wims 5-8 185 Sr. Robert Morris (Ill.) Jared Williamson Frederick, Md. (St. John’s Catholic)
RB Brandon Wegher 5-11 210 Sr. Morningside (Iowa) Steve Ryan Dakota Dunes, S.D. (Bishop Heelan)

Defense

Pos. Name Ht. Wt. Cl. School Coach Hometown (High School)
DL *Ty Phillips 6-2 270 Sr. Missouri Valley Paul Troth East St. Louis, Ill. (East St. Louis)
DL *Phil Latimer 6-0 255 Sr. Nebraska Wesleyan Brian Keller Broomfield, Colo. (Broomfield)
DL Kyle Connors 6-2 285 Sr. Siena Heights (Mich.) Jim Lyall Tecumseh, Mich. (Tecumseh)
DL Greg Hayward 6-3 230 Sr. Saint Xavier (Ill.) Mike Feminis Oak Lawn, Ill. (Oak Lawn Community)
LB Takari Johnson 6-1 235 Sr. Concordia (Mich.) Lonnie Pries Lansing, Mich. (Lansing Eastern)
LB *Sean Blomquist 5-11 235 Sr. Carroll (Mont.) Mike Van Diest Helena, Mont. (Helena)
LB Brandon Ruemler 6-0 208 Sr. Olivet Nazarene (Ill.) Brian Fish Williamsport, Ind. (Seeger Memorial)
DB Justin Wohlert 5-9 189 Jr. Northwestern (Iowa) Kyle Achterhoff Hartley, Iowa (Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn)
DB Adam Sauder 6-3 205 Jr. Taylor (Ind.) Ron Korfmacher Grabill, Ind. (Leo)
DB Carlos Cox 5-11 180 Sr. Friends (Kan.) Monty Lewis Newark, N.J. (West Side)
DB Marte Sears 6-5 220 Sr. Faulkner (Ala.) Charlie Boren Fresno, Calif. (McLain)

Specialists

Pos. Name Ht. Wt. Cl. School Coach Hometown (High School)
P David Strickland 6-0 228 Jr. Point (Ga.) David Rocker Opelika, Ala. (Beulah)
PK Cristian Casillas 6-0 180 Fr. MidAmerica Nazarene (Kan.) Brian Willmer Rialto, Calif. (Rancho Cucamonga)
AP *Stoney Burns 5-9 196 Sr. Bethel (Tenn.) Chris Elliott Orlando, Fla. (Jones)

*-2013 AFCA All-American

Team Background: The five teams now chosen for each AFCA division evolved from a single 11-player squad in 1945. From 1945 until 1967, only one team was chosen. From 1967 through 1971, two teams, University Division and College Division, were selected. In 1972, the College Division was split into College I and College II. In 1979, the University Division was split into two teams — FBS and FCS. In 1996, the College I and College II teams were renamed Division II and Division III, respectively.

From 1965-81, a 22-player (11 offensive, 11 defensive) team was chosen. In 1982, a punter and placekicker were added to the team. In 1997, a return specialist was added, giving us the current 25-player team. The return specialist position was replaced by an all-purpose player in 2006.

Selection Process: The AFCA’s NAIA All-America Selection Committee is made up of three head coaches from each of the AFCA’s nine districts, one of whom serves as a district chairman, along with another head coach who serves as the chairman of the selection committee. The coaches in each district are responsible for ranking the top players in their respective districts prior to a conference call between the district chairmen and the committee chairman on which the team is chosen.

AFCA NAIA Player Selection History: NAIA players who were selected to AFCA All-America teams were named to the AFCA College Division team from 1967-71. In 1972, the AFCA College Division was split to College I and College II.  Players from NAIA Division I teams were placed in AFCA College I, while players from NAIA Division II were placed in AFCA College II.  That process lasted until 1996, when College I and College II were renamed Division II and Division III.  From 1996-2005, all NAIA players who were selected as Coaches’ All-Americans were placed on the AFCA Division II team. In 2006, the AFCA started selecting an NAIA-only team.

Top Teams: Georgetown (Ky.) and Carroll (Mont.) have both been represented a total of 18 times on AFCA Coaches’ All-America Teams to lead all schools in NAIA. Carroll (Mont.) has had 16 different players selected and Georgetown (Ky.) has had 15 different players selected to the team. Trailing Georgetown (Ky.) and Carroll (Mont.) are: Morningside (10/10), Saint Xavier (8/8), Missouri Valley (8/6), Southern Oregon (7/7), Northwestern (Iowa) (7/6), Saint Francis (Ind.) (7/6), Bethel (Tenn.) (7/5), Baker (6/6), Grand View (6/6), St. Ambrose (6/6), Montana Tech (6/5), Benedictine (Kan.) (6/5), MidAmerica Nazarene (6/5), St. Francis (Ill.) (6/5), Marian (5/5), Friends (5/4), Nebraska Wesleyan (5/4), Dakota Welseyan (4/4), Hastings (4/4) and Jamestown (4/4).

First Time School: Offensive lineman Zac Woods of Dakota State, running back Lamont Wims of Robert Morris (Ill.), linebacker Takari Johnson of Concordia (Mich.) and punter David Strickland of Point have earned All-America honors for their schools, for the first time, in 2014.

Consecutive Years: Carroll (Mont.) has had at least one player named to the AFCA Coaches’ All-America Team for 10 straight seasons, from 2005 to present, the longest streak by any team in NAIA. Following Carroll (Mont.) is Morningside with nine straight selections (2006-present).

Repeat After Me: Wide receiver Andre McCullouch of Rocky Mountain, defensive linemen Ty Phillips of Missouri Valley and Phil Latimer of Nebraska Wesleyan, linebacker Sean Blomquist of Carroll and all-purpose player Stoney Burns of Bethel earned AFCA NAIA Coaches’ All-America honors for the second consecutive season in 2014.

Georgetown (Ky.) has had the most repeat selections with three players (Clay Hamblen, DB, 2006-07; Chris Reed, OL, 1987-88; and Chris Hogan, DL, 1991-92).

Texas A&M-Kingsville’s Johnny Bailey is the only player to earn Coaches’ All-America honors in four consecutive years at any level. Bailey was a four-year pick at running back in 1986-87-88-89 in Division II.

Class Distinction: This year’s AFCA NAIA Coaches’ All-America Team is made up of 19 seniors, five juniors and one freshman.

Two Players, Two Schools: Punter Mark Bounds and placekicker Greg Zuerlein are the only players to earn Coaches’ All-America honors at two different schools. Bounds was named to the AFCA College Division I team in 1990 while playing for West Texas A&M. He transferred to Texas Tech after West Texas dropped football and earned I-A All-America honors as a Red Raider in 1991. Zuerlein was named to the Division II Coaches’ All-America Team in 2009 while playing for Nebraska-Omaha. He transferred to Missouri Western State after Nebraska-Omaha dropped its football program and earned Division II honors in 2011 as a Griffon.

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