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Stats Perform Names FCS Preseason All-America Teams

The FCS playoffs have been shelved for the fall after conferences opt to wait until spring.
The FCS playoffs have been shelved for the fall after conferences opt to wait until spring.(KPLC)
Published: Aug. 2, 2021 at 5:44 PM CDT
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - A total of 20 Missouri Valley Football Conference student-athletes earned selection to the Stats Perform FCS preseason All-America teams, announced Monday, Aug. 2.

Fullback Hunter Luepke, offensive lineman Cordell Volson and kick returner Christian Watson were three of North Dakota State’s six players named to the Stats Perform FCS Preseason All-America Team.

Luepke, Volson and Watson were named to the first team. NDSU tight end Noah Gindorff, defensive end Spencer Waege and linebacker James Kaczor were selected to the second team.

North Dakota junior running back Otis Weah and senior offensive lineman Matt Waletzko were both honored as well. Weah earned first-team honors while Waletzko was selected to the third team.

Weah took the FCS by storm in 2020-21, earning All-America status by six publications and finishing fourth for the Walter Payton Award presented to the top offensive player in the FCS. Waletzko returned from an ACL team in 2019 to help the Hawks lead the nation in the fewest negative plays allowed and only two sacks. The pairing were also both named to the Missouri Valley Football Conference All-Preseason First Team last week, the highest number of first-team preseason selections since 2017 when UND was a member of the Big Sky Conference. This is the second preseason All-America honor for Weah this year and Waletzko’s first. UND opens the season on Sept. 4 at Idaho State.

NDSU and defending national champion Sam Houston tied for the most preseason All-Americans with six each.

There are 120 All-Americans split into three 40-player teams. North Dakota State returns 20 of 22 starters from last spring’s FCS quarterfinal team that went 7-3 overall and 5-2 in the Missouri Valley Football Conference.

The Bison open their season Saturday, Sept. 4, against Albany at Gate City Bank Field at the Fargodome.

2021 STATS PERFORM FCS PRESEASON ALL-AMERICA TEAM

FIRST-TEAM

OFFENSE

QB – Eric Barriere, senior, 6-0, 200, Eastern Washington

QB – Cole Kelley, senior, 6-7, 260, Southeastern Louisiana

RB – Julius Chestnut, senior, 6-1, 215, Sacred Heart

RB – Jah-Maine Martin, senior, 5-10, 214, North Carolina A&T

RB – Otis Weah, junior, 5-9, 195, North Dakota

FB – Hunter Luepke, junior, 6-1, 245, North Dakota State

WR – Avante Cox, senior, 5-10, 170, Southern Illinois

WR – Jakob Herres, senior, 6-4, 211, VMI

WR – Tyler Hudson, sophomore, 6-2, 185, Central Arkansas

TE – Ryan Miller, senior, 6-2, 221, Furman

OL – P.J. Burkhalter, senior, 6-3, 330, Nicholls

OL – Liam Fornadel, senior, 6-4, 310, James Madison

OL – Garret Greenfield, junior, 6-6, 295, South Dakota State

OL – David Kroll, senior, 6-7, 315, Delaware

OL – Cordell Volson, senior, 6-7, 310, North Dakota State

OL – Ty Whitworth, senior, 6-4, 300, Weber State

DEFENSE

DL – Jared Brinkman, senior, 6-2, 290, Northern Iowa

DL – Isaiah Chambers, grad, 6-5, 250, McNeese

DL – Mike Greene, senior, 6-3, 285, James Madison

DL – Jahari Kay, senior, 6-2, 255, Sam Houston

DL – Jordan Lewis, junior, 6-3, 205, Southern

LB – Troy Andersen, senior, 6-4, 235, Montana State

LB – Logan Backhaus, senior, 6-4, 205, South Dakota State

LB – Willie Eubanks III, senior, 6-2, 230, The Citadel

LB – La’akea Kaho’ohanohano-Davis, senior, 6-1, 215, Southern Utah

LB – Stone Snyder, junior, 6-3, 225, VMI

LB – Tre Walker, senior, 6-1, 235, Idaho

DB – Markquese Bell, redshirt senior 6-3, 205, Florida A&M

DB – Nicario Harper, junior, 6-1, 205, Jacksonville State

DB – Kordell Jackson, senior, 5-9, 188, Austin Peay

DB – Ferlando Jordan, junior, 6-0, 180, Southeastern Louisiana

DB – Zyon McCollum, senior, 6-3, 195, Sam Houston

SPECIAL TEAMS

PK – Ethan Ratke, senior, 5-10, 185, James Madison

P – Daniel Whelan, senior, 6-6, 215, UC Davis

LS – Kyle Davis, senior, 5-11, 210, James Madison

KR – Christian Watson, senior, 6-4, 200, North Dakota State

PR – Jequez Ezzard, grad, 5-9, 190, Sam Houston

AP – Elijah Dotson, senior, 6-0, 185, Sacramento State

AP – Quay Holmes, senior, 6-1, 216, ETSU

AP – Javon Williams Jr., junior, 6-2, 245, Southern Illinois

SECOND TEAM

OFFENSE

QB – Zerrick Cooper, senior, 6-3, 225, Jacksonville State

QB – Eric Schmid, senior, 6-1, 180, Sam Houston

RB – Percy Agyei-Obese, senior, 6-0, 204, James Madison

RB – Karl Mofor, senior, 5-9, 229, Albany

RB – Pierre Strong Jr., senior, 5-11, 210, South Dakota State

FB – Nathan Walker, senior, 6-0, 225, Wofford

WR – Samuel Akem, senior, 6-4, 212, Montana

WR – Dai’Jean Dixon, senior, 6-4, 200, Nicholls

WR – Xavier Gipson, junior, 5-9, 170, Stephen F. Austin

TE – Noah Gindorff, junior, 6-6, 266, North Dakota State

TE – Rodney Williams II, senior, 6-4, 235, UT Martin

OL – AJ Farris, senior, 6-2, 300, Monmouth

OL – Tylan Grable, junior, 6-7, 260, Jacksonville State

OL – Braxton Jones, senior, 6-7, 310, Southern Utah

OL – Trevor Penning, senior, 6-7, 321, Northern Iowa

OL – Tre’mond Shorts, senior, 6-4, 326, ETSU

OL – Tristen Taylor, senior, 6-6, 325, Eastern Washington

DEFENSE

DL – DJ Coleman, senior, 6-6, 265, Jacksonville State

DL – Malik Hamm, senior, 6-3, 260, Lafayette

DL – Kobie Turner, senior, 6-3, 285, Richmond

DL – Spencer Waege, senior, 6-5, 274, North Dakota State

DL – Joseph Wallace, senior, 6-1, 300, Sam Houston

LB – Ryan Greenhagen, senior, 6-1, 235, Fordham

LB – James Kaczor, senior, 6-0, 211, North Dakota State

LB – Jace Lewis, senior, 6-1, 238, Montana

LB – Conner Mortensen, senior, 6-0, 215, Weber State

LB – Tristan Wheeler, junior, 6-2, 228, Richmond

DB – Anthony Adams, junior, 6-0, 185, Portland State

DB – Anthony Budd, senior, 5-11, 200, Monmouth

DB – Qua Brown, senior, 5-11, 206, Southern Illinois

DB – Decobie Durant, senior, 5-11, 175, South Carolina State

DB – Chris Edmonds, junior, 6-2, 205, Samford

DB – Kedrick Whitehead, senior, 5-11, 195, Delaware

SPECIAL TEAMS

PK – Antonio Zita, senior, 5-9, 170, Tennessee State

P – D.J. Arnson, grad, 6-0, 185, Northern Arizona

LS – Robert Soderholm, junior, 6-1, 216, VMI

KR – Rashid Shaheed, senior, 6-0, 180, Weber State

PR – Tyrin Ralph, senior, 5-8, 170, Arkansas-Pine Bluff

AP – Kevin Brown, senior, 5-9, 204, UIW

AP – Dejoun Lee, senior, 5-7, 185, Delaware

THIRD TEAM

OFFENSE

QB – E.J. Perry, senior, 6-2, 210, Brown

QB – Cameron Ward, sophomore, 6-3, 225, UIW

QB – Liam Welch, grad, 6-2, 194, Samford

RB – Josh Davis, junior, 5-9, 195, Weber State

RB – Juwon Farri, junior, 5-10, 195, Monmouth

RB – Geno Hess, senior, 5-8, 209, Southeast Missouri

RB – Devin Wynn, senior, 6-0, 211, Furman

FB – Logan Kendall, senior, 6-4, 264, Idaho

WR – Xavier Smith, redshirt senior, 5-10, 175, Florida A&M

WR – C.J. Turner, junior, 6-2, 180, Southeastern Louisiana

WR – Lujuan Winningham, junior, 6-3, 195, Central Arkansas

TE – Marshel Martin, sophomore, 6-2, 210, Sacramento State

OL – J’Von Brown, senior, 6-3, 320, Central Connecticut State

OL – ZeVeyon Furcron, senior, 6-2, 327, Southern Illinois

OL – Kyle Nunez, senior, 6-2, 340, Stony Brook

OL – J.D. DiRenzo, senior, 6-6, 315, Sacred Heart

OL – Colby Thomas, senior, 6-2, 295, Sam Houston

OL – Matt Waletzko, senior, 6-7, 295, North Dakota

DEFENSE

DL – Malik Fisher, senior, 6-4, 295, Villanova

DL – Devonnsha Maxwell, senior, 6-2, 295, Chattanooga

DL – Shaundre Mims, senior, 6-0, 276, Charleston Southern

DL – Jared Schiess, senior, 6-3, 300, Weber State

LB – Keonte Hampton, senior, 6-2, 220, Jackson State

LB – Matthew Jackson, senior, 6-2, 205, Eastern Kentucky

LB – Forrest Rhyne, senior, 6-1, 225, Villanova

LB – Jeremiah Tyler, senior, 6-2, 225, Princeton

DB – James Caesar, senior, 5-10, 185, Southern Illinois

DB – Brandon Easterling, senior, 6-0, 203, Dayton

DB – Marcis Floyd, junior, 6-0, 188, Murray State

DB – Robby Hauck, junior, 5-10, 185, Montana

DB – Evan Horn, senior, 6-0, 220, New Hampshire

DB – Tyree Robinson, senior, 5-11, 184, ETSU

SPECIAL TEAMS

PK – Luis Aguilar, grad, 6-3, 200, Northern Arizona

P – Noah Gettman, senior, 6-5, 205, Sacred Heart

P – Brady Schult, senior, 6-1, 215, South Dakota

LS – Matthew O’Donoghue, senior, 6-1, 260, Montana

KR – Malik Flowers, junior, 6-2, 195, Montana

PR – Mike Roussos, senior, 6-0, 195, Columbia

AP – Jake Chisholm, senior, 5-9, 182, Dayton

AP – Isaiah Davis, sophomore, 6-1, 220, South Dakota State

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