NEW YORK - Newberry College offensive lineman Heath Benedict has been named to the Associated Press' Little All-American First Team for the second straight season, college officials announced today.
Benedict, who was named a second team All-American by Daktronics, Inc., earlier this week, is one of four repeat Little All-American first teamers this season along with NCAA all-time leading rusher Danny Woodhead of Chadron State, Weston Dressler of North Dakota and Ben Hochstein of Nebraska-Omaha.
In Benedict's two All-American seasons, the Indians compiled a record of 20-4 and were South Atlantic Conference champions in 2006.
Benedict is a national finalist for the Gene Upshaw Award, which is awarded annually to the best lineman in Division II, for the second straight year and is the only South Atlantic Conference player named to this year's Little All-America team. He is slated to play in the 2008 Under Armour Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala., on January 26, 2008. He will be only the fourth SAC student-athlete to play in the game and the first since 2004.
Benedict is a two-time winner of the Jacobs Blocking Trophy, which is awarded to the top offensive lineman in the South Atlantic Conference. He was named a preseason All-American by six publications prior to the 2007 season, and was the leading vote-getter on this season's Daktronics All-Southeast Region team.
The AP Little All-America team honors players from Division II, III and the NAIA.
2007 Associated Press Little All-Americans
QB David Knighton Harding Univ.
RB Xavier Omon Northwest Missouri Stt. Univ.
RB Danny Woodhead Chadron St. College
WR Weston Dressler Univ. of North Dakota
WR Almonzo Banks West Liberty St. College
TE Kolo Kapanui West Texas A&M Univ.
OL Ben Hochstein Univ. of Nebraska-Omaha
OL Heath Benedict Newberry College
OL Brandon Barnes Grand Valley St. Univ.
OL Mackenzy Bernadeau Bentley Univ.
OL Tim McCutcheon California (Pa.) Univ.
AP Ashton Gronewold Univ. of Missouri-Rolla
K Jared Guberman Univ. of West Georgia
DL Brandon Swain West Texas A&M Univ.
DL Curtis Johnson Clark Atlanta Univ.
DL Kurt Kissner Mesa St. College
DL Bryan Robinson Wesley College
LB Michael Eubanks Delta State Univ.
LB Jerrell Freeman Univ. of Mary Hardin-Baylor
LB Anthony Adams Grand Valley St. Univ.
DB Randy Kush Univ. of Nebraska-Omaha
DB Cary Williams Washburn Univ.
DB Kendall Ricketts Univ. of Central Missouri
DB Matt Kostelnik Mount Union College
P Michael Podobnik Arkansas Tech Univ.
Information courtesy of the Associated Press