NEWBERRY, S.C. - Newberry College offensive lineman Heath Benedict has been named a first team All-American by D2Football.com, school officials announced today. Senior running back Alex Haynes was also recognized on the Honorable Mention list.
Heath Benedict, a senior from Greer, S.C., adds his third postseason All-American honor of the 2007 season to a list of honors that highlights one of the most successful football careers in Newberry history. Benedict is slated to participate in next weekend's 2008 Under Armour Senior Bowl (Saturday, 4 p.m., NFL Network) in preparation for April's NFL Draft. He is a three-time first team all-South Atlantic Conference honoree, two-time winner of the SAC's Jacobs Blocking Trophy and a two-time national finalist for the Gene Upshaw Award.
Alex Haynes, a senior from Summerville, S.C., earns his first career All-American honor following an outstanding career as one of the top running backs in the SAC and in Newberry history. He wrapped up his career with over 2,500 rushing yards and two consecutive seasons of 1,000 yards or more. He was a first team all-South Atlantic Conference selection in each of the last two seasons and set a Newberry record with 255 rushing yards in the 2007 win over Bowie State. He was also selected to play in the 2007 East Coast Bowl.
Northwest Missouri running back Xavier Omon and Delta State linebacker Michael Eubanks highlight the 100 players named to the 2007 D2Football.com All-America Team.
There were 54 schools represented. Grand Valley, who carried a 40-game winning streak into the national semifinals, had the most first-team selections with three. Abilene Christian led with six overall selections.
After being the first running back in history to rush for 1500 yards in four different seasons, Omon was named the Offensive Player of the Year. Eubanks, the all-time sack leader in Division II history, was named the Defensive Player of the Year. Valdosta State coach David Dean, who led the Blazers to a championship in his first season as head coach, was named Coach of the Year.
The D2Football.com All-America Team was selected by the staff of D2Football.com with input from coaches and sports information directors from around the country.
D2Football.com has named an All-America Team since its inception in 2000.
To view the entire 2007 D2Football All-America Team, click here.