BYU Players Receive All-Independent Honors

(Photo by Jaren Wilkey/BYU Photo)

Several BYU players were named to two different All-Independent Teams following the Cougars' 9-3 regular season campaign. Seventeen different players have been honored, including freshman wide receiver Ross Apo who was named a 2011 College Football News Freshman All-America honorable mention and the Yahoo! Sports Independent Freshman of the Year.

Head coach Bronco Mendenhall also received Coach of the Year honors from Yahoo! Sports.

Phil Steele and Yahoo! Sports both released their All-Independent Teams recently, with BYU well represented. The Cougars had eight players named to the Yahoo! Sports All-Independent Team and 16 players with 17 total selections on the Phil Steele All-Independent First and Second Teams. BYU had nine selections on the first team and eight on the second team.

Apo started the season strong and finished even stronger. The freshman from Texas caught a touchdown pass in each of the first three games and closed the season with two touchdowns in each of the last two contests. Apo finished the season with 34 receptions, 453 yards and a team-leading nine touchdowns.

Despite limited action to start the season, quarterback Riley Nelson was named to both teams, including a first-team selection from Phil Steele. Nelson emerged as BYU's starter following the Utah State game where he led the Cougars to a come-from-behind victory with two late touchdown drives. The junior from Logan finished the season 5-1 as a starter, including recently defeating Hawaii with a career-high 363 passing yards and three touchdown passes. Nelson finished the regular season completing 99 of 162 passes for 1,467 yards and 16 touchdowns with 376 rushing yards and one touchdown on 75 attempts.

Phil Steele First Team
OFFENSE
QB Riley Nelson BYU
RB Cierre Wood Notre Dame
RB Jonas Gray Notre Dame
WR Michael Floyd Notre Dame
WR Cody Hoffman BYU
TE Tyler Eifert Notre Dame
C Brady DeMell Navy
OL Trevor Robinson Notre Dame
OL Braden Hansen BYU
OL Zack Martin Notre Dame
OL Matt Reynolds BYU
     
DEFENSE
DL Aaron Lynch Notre Dame
DL Louis Nix Notre Dame
DL Jabaree Tuani Navy
LB Manti Te'o Notre Dame
LB Steven Erzinger Army
LB Kyle Van Noy BYU
LB Matt Warrick Navy
DB Harrison Smith Notre Dame
DB Robert Blanton Notre Dame
DB Tra'ves Bush Navy
DB Corby Eason BYU
     
SPECIAL TEAMS
K Justin Sorensen BYU
P Riley Stephenson BYU
KR George Atkinson III Notre Dame
PR JD Falslev BYU
Phil Steele Second Team
OFFENSE
QB Tommy Rees Notre Dame
RB Alexander Teich Navy
RB Raymond Mapl Army
WR Ross Apo BYU
WR Theo Riddick Notre Dame
TE Austin Holt BYU
C Braxston Cave Notre Dame
OL John Dowd Navy
OL Frank Allen Army
OL Braden Brown BYU
OL Ryan Basford Navy
     
DEFENSE
DL AJ Mackey Army
DL Stephon Tuitt Notre Dame
DL Hebron Fangupo BYU
LB Brandon Ogletree BYU
LB Darius Fleming Notre Dame
LB Andrew Rodriguez Army
LB Uona Kaveinga BYU
DB Travis Uale BYU
DB Josh Jackson Army
DB Gary Gray Notre Dame
DB Kwesi Mitchell Navy
     
SPECIAL TEAMS
K Jon Teague Navy
P Ben Turk Notre Dame
KR Cody Hoffman BYU
PR Marcus Thomas Navy
Yahoo! All-Indy Team
OFFENSE
QB Riley Nelson BYU
RB Jonas Gray Notre Dame
RB Cierre Wood Notre Dame
WR Michael Floyd Notre Dame
WR Cody Hoffman BYU
TE Tyler Eifert Notre Dame
T Zack Martin Notre Dame
T Matt Reynolds BYU
G John Dowd Navy
G Braden Hansen BYU
C Braxston Cave Notre Dame
     
DEFENSE
E Aaron Lync Notre Dame
T Louis Nix Notre Dame
E Jabaree Tuani Navy
LB Steve Erzinger Army
LB Manti Te'o Notre Dame
LB Kyle Van Noy BYU
LB Matt Warrich Navy
CB Robert Blanton Notre Dame
CB Preston Hadley BYU
S Jamoris Slaughter Notre Dame
S Harrison Smith Notre Dame
     
SPECIAL TEAMS
K David Ruffer Notre Dame
P Riley Stephenson BYU
KR Georgie Atkinson III Notre Dame
PR JD Falslev BYU