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UD Football BIO
Bilal Nichols
Player Profile:
Bilal Nichols 1871960
Position: Defensive Line (Captain)
Height: 6'4"
Weight: 290
Year: Senior
Hometown: Newark, Del.
High School: Hodgson Vo-Tech
Major: Sociology
Experience: 3 Letters

Fourth-year member of the squad as a senior defensive tackle • will serve as team co-captain with Charles Bell, Brody Kern, Troy Reeder, Joe Walker, and Kyle Yocum • preseason All-Colonial Athletic Association selection by league head coaches and media relations directors • two-time All-Colonial Athletic Association selection and strong All-American candidate • has pro potential • will start for second straight year and solidify the middle of the line at nose tackle in Delaware's new 3-4 alignment • one of nine returning starter on defense, one of 20 seniors, and among 23 Delawareans on the roster • has played in 33 career games with 10 starts and recorded 48 tackles (26 solo) • has 11 tackles for loss (52 yards), four sacks (38 yards), three forced fumbles, one interception, and six pass breakups • has a big, athletic body and unlimited potential • despite fierceness on the field is one of the team's likeable and polite players • shared team's Weight Room Champion honors with linebacker Troy Reeder for spring drills for outstanding work and improvement in the weight room.

Produced another outstanding season on the defensive line as a junior • earned second team All-CAA honors • played in 10 games and started nine at defensive tackle • missed Week 2 vs. Lafayette with an injury • recorded 25 tackles, including 18 solo stops • ranked second on the team with 7.5 tackles for loss (37 yards) and with five sacks (28 yards) • ranked No. 8 in the CAA in sacks • also forced a fumble, led the team with five pass breakups, and had a safety against Albany • had season-high six tackles vs. Maine, added four vs. William & Mary, and had three in each of the final three games of the season • forced a fumble vs. Richmond • key member of Delaware defense that ranked No. 6 in the CAA in total defense (349.7 yards allowed per game) • served as game captain vs. Stony Brook • Blue Hen Touchdown Club Defensive Player of the Week vs. Maine • selected as a National Strength and Conditioning Association All-American.

Earned third team All-CAA honors • continued to be a strong force on the defensive front from the tackle position as a sophomore • played in all 11 games and started one (vs. Albany) but saw significantly more playing time than starter Josh Plummer • productive player against both the pass and the run • had 29 tackles (12 solo), 1.5 sacks, two tackles for loss, one interception, and a pass breakup • had at least one tackle in all but one game and recorded a career-high eight in early season win over Lafayette • also made four stops vs. Jacksonville and James Madison and three against Albany • had sacks vs. Lafayette and William & Mary • forced fumbles vs. Lafayette and Willliam & Mary and intercepted first career pass against Towson • led a unit that ranked No. 5 in the CAA and 24th in the NCAA in total defense (329.2) and was No. 3 in both rushing defense (123.5/17th in NCAA) and scoring defense (20.5/22nd in NCAA)Blue Hen Touchdown Club Defensive Player of the Week vs. William & Mary • earned UD Team Sportsmanship Award • selected by coaching staff to carry out the Delaware state flag in game vs. Villanova • recorded two tackles in Blue-White Spring Game.

One of nine true freshmen to see action on defense for the Blue Hens and one of two defensive linemen • saw significant time in all 12 games as a backup defensive tackle • recorded 19 tackles on the season, including nine solo stops • had career-high four tackles vs. Elon and added three each in collegiate debut vs. Pitt and vs. Colgate • had two tackles for loss (vs. Delaware State and Villanova) • member of CAA Academic All-Conference team • selected by coaching staff to carry out the Delaware state flag in game vs. Towson.

All-State tight end and defensive end at nearby Hodgson Vo-Tech High School • played for head coach Frank Moffett, who played defensive back at Delaware in the 1980s • team captain • first team All-State at tight end and third team at defensive end in 2013 • All-Blue Hen Conference first team tight end and second team defensive end in 2013 and second team linebacker in 2012 • led team to a three-year record of 33-5, three conference titles, and a 2013 Delaware Division II state title • team went 12-2 in 2013 and defeated St. George's Vo-Tech 38-0 at Delaware Stadium for the title • team went 11-2 and was state runner-up in 2012 • caught 13 passes for 326 yards and seven touchdowns as a senior and recorded 57 tackles, including 11 sacks and 26 tackles for loss • honor roll student all four years • two-time Academic All-State selection.

Bilal (“bu-lahl”) Shakur Nichols • sociology major at Delaware with a minor in human services • born Sept. 14, 1996 • son of Adova and Dolores Bolton • has a younger sister, Neajah Nichols • hobbies include playing basketball, listening to music, and collecting sneakers • was featured by media outlets several times during 2015 season for his unique relationship with his grandparents who raised him.


Year G/S Tackles (Solo)
2016 10/9 25 (18) 2.0-28/7.5-37 0/1 0/5
2015 11/1 29 (17) 2-10 / 1.5-9 0/2 1/1
2014 12/0 19 (9)
0-0 / 2-6
0/0 0/0
TOTALS 33/10 48 (26)
4-38 / 11-52

Tackles: 8 vs. Lafayette, 2015

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Delaware Blue Hens