16 Cougars Highlight All-MWC Academic Team

The Cougars had a league-leading 16 student-athletes earn All-MWC Academic Team honors, including three-time recipient Toby Christensen. (Photo by Mark Philbrick/BYU Photo)

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- The Mountain West Conference today announced its All-Academic team for the 2002 football season, led by BYU with a league-leading 16 student-athletes. This year's squad is comprised of 87 student-athletes, including 43 repeat qualifiers consisting of 4 four-time honorees, 15 three--time selections and 24 named for the second consecutive year.

BYU placed a conference-high 16 student-athletes on the Academic All-MWC team, followed by Wyoming (14), Colorado State (13), New Mexico (12), Utah (11), UNLV (9), Air Force (8), and San Diego State (4).

The Academic All-MWC team is highlighted by the league's first four-time members; Jordan Gross (Utah), Joe Haro (UNLV), Toby Smeltzer (UNLV), and John Wilson (Wyoming).

A total of eight players from the 2002 All-Mountain West Conference teams garnered academic honors, including first-team selections Joey Ashcroft (Air Force), Joel Dreessen (Colorado State), Jordan Gross (Utah), Kassim Osgood (San Diego State), and Brady Poppinga (BYU). Second-team members included Mark Dreyer (Colorado State), Joe Haro (UNLV) and Eric Pauly (Colorado State).

To be eligible for selection student-athletes must have completed at least one academic term at the member institution while maintaining a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or better and be a starter or significant contributor.

Mountain West Conference All-Academic Team

BYU Honorees

PLAYER CL MAJOR

Justin Andersen* Sr Communications

Bryant Atkinson Fr Management

Toby Christensen** Jr Communications

Logan Deans Fr Theater and Media Arts

John Denney So Management

Scott Jackson Jr International Studies

Ryan Keele* Sr Management

Bryan Kehl Fr Management

Michael Madsen Sr Health Science

Daniel Marquardt So Management

Kip Nielsen Jr Spanish

Andrew Ord** Sr Construction Management

Brady Poppinga* So Management

Brandon Stephens Jr Construction Management

Kyle Wilson Jr International Studies

Bill Wright* Jr Management

** - three-time member

* - on last year's Academic All-MWC Team