Offensive Player of the Year Devlin, Rookie of the Year Pierce Highlight Colonial Athletic Association All-Star Honors for Blue Hens
November 22, 2010
Pictured from top to bottom: QB Pat Devlin, RB Andrew Pierce; S Anthony Bratton; OG Gino Gradkowski (Photos Courtesy of Mark Campbell)
RICHMOND, Va. -- Quarterback Pat Devlin and running back Andrew Pierce have made the University of Delaware offense go this season - and the/ two were recognized for their outstanding seasons by the Colonial Athletic Association Monday afternoon.
Devlin was named the 2010 CAA Offensive Player of the Year, Pierce was named the CAA Offensive Rookie of the Year, and offensive guard Gino Gradkowski and safety Anthony Bratton also earned first team honors as the annual CAA All-Star teams were announced.
The Blue Hens (9-2), whose season included capturing a share of the CAA title, spending two weeks as the nation’s top-ranked team, and earning the No. 3 seed and a first round bye in the upcoming NCAA Tournament, placed a league-high 16 members on the three teams, which were selected from a vote of the 10 league head coaches. Co-champion William & Mary and Villanova each placed 14 players on the teams.
Delaware is off this week but will host the winner of this week’s first round game between Lehigh and Northern Iowa next Saturday, Dec. 4, at 12 noon at Delaware Stadium.
In addition to the four first team selections, the Hens placed six players on the second team - OL Rob McDowell, K Mike Perry, DL Siddiq Haynes, LB Matt Marcorelle, CB Tyrone Grant, and CB Anthony Walters - and six players on the third team - TE Colin Naugle, OL Shea Allard, DL Michael Atunrase, LB Paul Worrilow, S Darryl Jones, and P Ed Wagner.
Massachusetts LB Tyler Holmes and LB Eric McBride of Richmond shared the Defensive Player of the Year Award; William & Mary RB Jonathan Grimes was the Special Teams Player of the Year, James Madison LB Stephon Robertson was the Defensive Rookie of the Year; and Rhode Island head coach Joe Trainer was selected as CAA Coach of the Year.
Devlin (Downingtown East HS/Downingtown, Pa.), a second-year transfer from Penn State who is a Top 10 finalist for the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award as the top quarterback in the nation as well as candidate for the Walter Payton National Player of the Year Award, becomes the 10th player in UD history to earn a conference Player of the Year Award and first since current Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco was selected in 2007. Devlin has enjoyed an outstanding season, throwing for 2,158 yards and 14 touchdowns with just two interceptions and passing for over 200 yards six times. He ranks third nationally in completion percentage (.673) and No. 6 in passing rating (151.31). He earned ESPN/CoSIDA District 2 All-Academic honors earlier this month and is a candidate for Academic All-American honors.
Pierce (Cumberland Regional/Bridgeton, N.J.), who walked on to the Delaware squad this past spring, has been an instant success, rushing for a UD freshman record 1,149 yards and 12 touchdowns and scoring three more touchdowns through the air. He leads the CAA in rushing at 104.5 yard per game and ranks No. 1 among all FCS rookies in rushing and No. 2 in all-purpose yardage and scoring. He has run for over 100 yards four times this season with a season-high 200 yards vs. Duquesne. He also earned the CAA Rookie of the Week honors a record six times this season and twice was selected as The Sporting Network National Freshman of the Week. He becomes just the fourth player in UD history to earn conference Rookie of the Year honors, joining QB Bill Vergantino (1989), RB Daryl Brown (1991), and CB Sidney Haugabroook (2001).
Gradkowski, a junior guard from Pittsburgh, Pa. (Seton-LaSalle HS), is a second-year starter this season after transferring from West Virginia University. He has played nearly every snap this season - also seeing time at center - and has paved the way for Devlin and Pierce to post big offensive numbers. Delaware closed out the regular season ranking No. 1 in the CAA in rushing offense (188.5) and scoring offense (28.5), and No. 2 in total offense (405.5).
Bratton, a senior strong safety from Manassas, Va. (Osbourn Park HS), anchors a deep, experienced, and balanced defensive unit that leads the nation in scoring defense at 11.6 points per game while ranking first in the CAA in total defense (267.8) and pass efficiency defense (99.12). A second team All-CAA pick a year ago, this season Bratton has collected 66 tackles (37 solo), has three tackles for loss, two interceptions, two forced fumbles, and a team-high eight pass breakups.
McDowell, a junior center from Silver Spring, Md. (DeMatha HS), is a third-year starter on the offensive line and a second-year starter at center. He has helped pave the way for the offense that leads the CAA in rushing and second and ranks No. 2 in total offense.
Perry, a junior from Thorofare, N.J. (West Deptford HS), is a first-year regular for the Blue Hens this season and has been steady on both extra points and field goals. He has converted 35 of 39 extra points and leads the CAA with 15 field goals in 20 attempts. He leads all CAA kickers in field goals (1.36 per game) and in kick scoring (7.3 points per game) and was the hero of the 13-10 win over James Madison in early October when he kicked a game-winning 28-yarder in the closing seconds.
Haynes, a senior defensive tackle from Durham, N.C. (Jordan HS), anchors a Blue Hen defensive front that has been solid despite some early-season question marks. He ranks second among UD down linemen with 27 tackles, including three for loss and two sacks, and has helped the Hens rank second in the CAA in rushing defense at 106.1 yards per game. He is one of 22 national finalists for the Allstate/AFCA Goodworks Team for outstanding community service this season.
Marcorelle, a sixth-year senior and fourth-year team captain from Ft. Pierce, Fla. (John Carroll HS), earned All-CAA honors for the third time in his career after also being honored on the second team in 2008 and the third team in 2007. He ranks No. 4 on the team with 67 tackles and leads the squad with seven tackles for loss. He also has a sack, one interception, and two breakups.
Walters, a senior cornerback from Philadelphia (Cardinal O’Hara HS), earned All-CAA honors for the second time after being picked for the first team a year ago. Despite missing two games this season with a nagging shoulder injury, he still has collected 54 tackles, is tied for the team lead with 41 solo stops and with four interceptions, and has broken up five other passes. He ranks among the nation’s active leaders with 12 career interceptions.
Grant, a senior cornerback from Savannah, Ga. (Poly Prep Country Day, N.Y. HS), has lso enjoyed an outstanding season in the UD secondary, registering 57 tackles, two tackles for loss, four interceptions, and six pass breakups. He returned an interception 47 yards for a touchdown vs. Duquesne in September, setting a school record with his third career touchdown off an interception.
Naugle, a junior tight end from Reading, Pa. (Reading Central Catholic HS), not only has provided solid blocking for the league’s top rushing attack, but has also hauled in 10 passes for 131 yards and a touchdown. He is among seven UD receivers with 10 or more pass receptions this season and his 13.1-yard average ranks third on the squad. He scored his first career touchdown on a 31-yard reception vs. Massachusetts in early November.
Allard, a junior tackle from Merritt Island, Fla. (Wareham, Mass. HS), is a secong-year starter on the offensive line and has helped pave the way for the offense that leads the CAA in rushing and second and ranks No. 2 in total offense.
Atunrase, a junior end from Yardley, Pa. (Lawrenceville, N.J. HS), has been the Hens’ most dynamic defensive linemen all season before injuring his knee vs. Massachusetts. A second-year starter, he leads all UD down linemen with 35 tackles and has six tackles for loss, two sacks, and a pass breakup.
Worrilow, a sophomore linebacker from Wilmington, Del. (Concord HS), has been steady on the outside for Delaware the last two seasons, starting all 22 games since his freshman year. He is currently Delaware’s leading tackler with 75 stops (25 solo) and also paces the squad with six tackles for loss. He also has three pass breakups and earlier this season became the first player in UD history to return a fumble for a touchdown in two consecutive games vs. Maine and Rhode Island.
Jones, a senior from Landover, Md. (St. John’s HS) and a first-year transfer from Northeastern, broke into the starting lineup in the fourth game of the season and has never left. He ranks third on the team and first among all UD defensive backs with 68 tackles, including tying for the team lead with 48 solo stops. He also has two interceptions, one pass breakup, and blocked a field goal.
Wagner, a senior punter from Barto, Pa. (Perkiomen School), continues to be one of the most valuable punters in the CAA as he earned third team honors for the second straight year. He ranks third in the CAA and 28th nationally in punting average with a distance of 40.3 yards per punt while placing 14 kicks inside the opponent 20-yard line and forcing five fair catches. He has had six punts go longer than 50 yards, including a season-long 58 yarder, and did not have a punt blocked in 45 attempts.
2010 Colonial Athletic Association Football Honors
OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR -- Pat Devlin, Delaware
DEFENSIVE PLAYERS OF THE YEAR -- Tyler Holmes, Massachusetts; Eric McBride, Richmond
SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE YEAR -- Jonathan Grimes, William and Mary
OFFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR -- Andrew Pierce, Delaware
DEFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR -- Stephon Robertson, James Madison
COACH OF THE YEAR -- Joe Trainer, Rhode Island
2010 All-CAA Football First Team
Offense: QB - Pat Devlin (Delaware); RB - Andrew Pierce (Delaware), Jonathan Grimes (Wm. & Mary); FB - Kendall Gaskins (Richmond), Jimmy Hobson (Wm & Mary); WR - Terrance Fox (New Hampshire); Tre Gray (Richmond), Anthony Nelson (Massachusetts), Norman White (Villanova); TE - Alex Gottlieb (William & Mary); OL - Brant Clouser (Villanova), Gino Gradkowski (Delaware), Keith Hill, Jr. (Wm & Mary), Ben Ijalana (Villanova), Greg Niland (Massachusetts); PK - Wil Kamin (Richmond), KR - Travis Hurd (Rhode Island), PR - Justin Rogers (Richmond).
Defense: DL - Victor Adesanya (Rhode Island), Ronnell Brown (James Madison), Brian McNally (New Hampshire); Martin Parker (Richmond); LB - Tyler Holmes (Massachusetts), Marquis Kirkland (Villanova), Eric McBride (Richmond), Terence Thomas (Villanova), CB - Justin Rogers (Richmond), Dino Vasso), New Hampshire), B.W. Webb (William & Mary); S - Anthony Bratton (Delaware), Hugo Souza (New Hampshire), P - David Miller (William & Mary).
Second Team: Offense - QB - Chris Whitney (Villanova), RB - Jonathan Hernandez (Massachusetts), Jamal Sullivan (James Madison), FB/HB - Tyler Wharton (Towson), WR - Ryan Moody (Wm. & Mary), Hakeem Moore (Towson), Julian Talley (Massachusetts), TE - Derek Buttles (Maine), OL - Roane Babington (James Madison), Drew Lachenmayer (Richmond), Rob McDowell (Delaware), Seth Price (New Hampshire), Theo Sherman (James Madison); PK - Mike Perry (Delaware); KR - Jonathan Grimes (Wm. & Mary), PR - B.W. Webb (Wm. & Mary); Defense - DL - Siddiq Haynes (Delaware), Marcus Hyde (Wm. & Mary), Yaky Ibia (Towson), Michael Stover (Wm. & Mary); LB - Dante Cook (Wm. & Mary), Matt Evans (New Hampshire), Matt Hansen (Rhode Island), Matt Marcorelle (Delaware); CB - Tyrone Grant (Delaware), Anthony Walters (Delaware); S - Fred Maldonado (Villanova), Jerron McMillian (Maine); P - Dominic Scarnecchia (Villanova).
Third Team: Offense - QB - R.J. Toman (New Hampshire), RB - Aaron Ball (Villanova), John Griffin (Massachusetts), Dontra Peters (New Hampshire); WR - Anthony Baskerville (Rhode Island), Chase Hill (Wm. & Mary), Derek Session (Maine); TE - Colin Naugle (Delaware); OL - Shea Allard (Delaware), Kyle Bogumil (Rhode Island), Jason Foster (Rhode Island), Chris Howley (Maine), James Pagliaro (Wm. & Mary), Dan Shirey (Villanova); PK - Mike MacArthur (New Hampshire); KR - Steven Barker (Maine); PR - Dae’Quan Scott (James Madison); Defense - DL - Michael Atunrase (Delaware), Frank Beltre (Towson), Antoine Lewis (Villanova), Thomas Weaver (Villanova), Steve Young (New Hampshire); LB - Donte Blakey (Towson),Donte Dennis (Maine), Stephon Robertson (James Madison), Paul Worrilow (Delaware); CB - James Pitts (Villanova), Jarrod Williams (Rhode Island); S - John Dempsey (Villanova), Darryl Jones (Delaware); P - Ed Wagner (Delaware).