Albright's Drew Peterson Named to AFCA Coaches All-America Team
Albright College senior Drew Peterson has been named to the prestigious AFCA Coaches All-America Team, as announced Monday morning.
It is Peterson's second All-American honor of the season, after being named a second team selection by BSN last week. For the second consecutive year Albright has the only Middle Atlantic Conference selection to the AFCA (American Football Coaches Association) honors, which names only a first team.
A first team All-MAC selection at safety for the second year, Peterson tied for first in the nation with eight total interceptions. He had 133 return yards and a TD off those interceptions and added eight pass breakups for 16 passes defended.
Peterson had 46 tackles (26 solo) on the year, with one for loss. He totaled two interceptions vs. Kean, earning a spot on the D3football.com Team of the Week. He also had two picks and returned one for a touchdown at FDU-Florham- his fourth career multi-INT game.
On special teams, the senior totaled 242 kick return yards (12 returns) and 116 punt return yards (17 returns). He concluded his career with 16 interceptions and four TD returns (3 INT, 1 punt). He is also a finalist for the Cliff Harris Small College Defensive Player of the Year award.
Peterson becomes just the 10th first team All-American from NCAA-recognized organizations in Albright football history (according to the official NCAA record book). Other first team selections were Dick Riffle (Associated Press, 1936 and 1937), Chris Simcic (AFCA/Associated Press, 1975), Dennis Unger (AFCA, 1995), Bob Maro (Division III/Don Hansen's Football Gazette, 1996), Ryan Ditze (Don Hansen's Football Gazette, 1996), Chris Morehouse (Don Hansen's Football Gazette, 1998), Nick Cushman (AFCA/D3football.com/Don Hansen's Football Gazette. 2004) and Scott Pillar (AFCA, 2012).
Team Background: The AFCA has selected an All-America team every year since 1945. The five teams now chosen for each AFCA division evolved from a single 11-player squad in 1945.
From 1965-81, a 22-player (11 offensive, 11 defensive) team was chosen. In 1982, a punter and placekicker were added to the team. In 1997, a return specialist was added, giving us the current 25-player team. The return specialist position was replaced by an all-purpose player in 2006.
What makes these teams so special is that they are the only ones chosen exclusively by the men who know the players the best — the coaches themselves.
Selection Process: The AFCA's Division III All-America Selection Committee is made up of three head coaches from each of the AFCA's nine districts, one of whom serves as a district chairman, along with another head coach who serves as the chairman of the selection committee. The coaches in each district are responsible for ranking the top players in their respective districts prior to a conference call between the district chairmen and the committee chairman on which the team is chosen.
The Award: Members of the AFCA Coaches' All-America Team receive a plaque commemorating their selection to the team.
Class Distinction: This year's AFCA Division III Coaches' All-America Team is made up of 18 seniors and seven juniors.
For more information on the AFCA and its programs log on to the AFCA's website at www.afca.com.