Dec. 14, 2011
HATTIESBURG, Miss. - Fourteen Golden Eagle football student-athletes were honored as All-Americans or All-Conference USA performers in a release from the Phil Steele publication today.
The No. 21 Golden Eagles had members on all but two of the nine All-Conference teams by the publication, while cornerback Marquese Wheaton (Phoenix, Ariz.) was named a fourth team All-American. Wheaton is the second consecutive Golden Eagle to earn All-American honors from the publication, following kicker Danny Hrapmann's third team showing a year ago.
Among the All-Conference USA awards, offensive tackle Lamar Holmes (Gastonia, N.C.) was the lone first teamer for the Golden Eagles on offense. Senior quarterback Austin Davis (Meridian, Miss.), center Austin Quattrochi (Marietta, Ga.) and offensive tackle Jason Weaver (New Orleans, La.) all received second team nods. Receiver Ryan Balentine (Killeen, Texas) completed the offensive team awards with a third-team accolade.
On defense, the Golden Eagles placed three on the first team squad: defensive end Cordarro Law (Whitfield, Ala.), linebacker Ronnie Thornton (Miami, Fla.), and Wheaton. Three more members of the Black and Gold earned second team honors including bandit end Jamie Collins (McCall Creek, Miss.), defensive tackle Terrance Pope (Pope, Miss.) and cornerback Deron Wilson (New Orleans, La.).
On the special teams squads, Tracey Lampley (Waynesboro, Miss.) earned the first team honor at punt returner. Lampley also received an honorable mention All-American honor yesterday by SI.com. Hrapmann (New Orleans, La.) wrapped up the awards with a third team spot.
The Golden Eagles are in the midst of preparing for their 10th consecutive bowl trip, heading to the 2011 Sheraton Hawai'i bowl. Southern Miss will square off against Western Athletic Conference member Nevada on December 24. Kickoff is set for 7 p.m. CT on ESPN.
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