Saint Francis Football Receives All-MSFA Honors

FINDLAY, OHIO – Returning American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) All-American Adam Sauder, two players who will lead their teams into the NAIA Championship Series and the Mid-States Football Association leader in tackles for a loss and sacks headline the 2015 MSFA All-League special awards for the 22-year-old association.

University of Saint Francis (Ind.) sophomore quarterback Nick Ferrer (Westfield, Ind.) is the MEL offensive player of the year. Ferrer is the second USF quarterback chosen for the honor and the seventh member of a USF football team to be named MSFA Mideast Player of the Year joining WR Jeremy Dutcher (2000), RB Cory Jacquay (2004), QB Chris Bramell (2005), LB Brian Kurtz (2006), RB Daniel Carter (2008) and OT Cam Edwards (2013).

Ferrer (6-5, 225) did was lead the MSFA in passing (307.4 yards per game) and efficiency (166 of 268, 3 interceptions) and passed for 33 touchdowns, the most in a single season since Jeremy Hibbeln set the USF record with 41 in 2000.


Ferrer will lead unbeaten Saint Francis against Reinhardt University (Ga.) and Simms will help Saint Xavier battle No. 1-ranked Morningside (Iowa) in Saturday’s first round of the NAIA playoffs. Marian (Ind.) will also represent the MSFA in the post-season by hosting Campbellsville, Ky.

Kevin Donley, the only coach Saint Francis has had since introducing football in 1998 and in the midst of the school’s 17th straight winning season, is the MEL Coach of the Year after the Cougars went 6-0 to win the league title and 9-0 overall, the only unbeaten team during the regular season. This is Donley’s 10th MEL Coach of the Year award, his 18th in 37 years as a collegiate head coach. He is 287-121-1 overall and USF is 95-16 in MSFA MEL play under Donley’s guidance.

The 12-time, MEL Champion, NAIA fourth-ranked Cougars had 13 first-team selections, 3 second-team selections and 3 honorable mention for a total of 19 selections (in bold below).


The lone 3-time all-conference player on the 2015 MSFA squads is Cameron Smith, a 6-1, 200-pound senior wide receiver at Saint Francis.

2015 All-MSFA Selections

Mideast League

First Team Offense

QUARTERBACK: Nick Ferrer (Westfield, Ind.), St, Francis, Ind., 6-5, 225, So.

RUNNING BACKS: Robert Gibson (Greencastle, Ind.), Marian, 5-10, 195, Jr.; Justin Green (Griffith, Ind.), St. Francis, Ind., 5-11, 186, R-Fr.

WIDE RECEIVERS: **Krishawn Hogan (Indianapolis, Ind.), Marian, 6-4, 210, Jr.; Seth Coate (Fort Wayne, Ind.), Saint Francis, Ind., 6-4, 210, Jr.; ***Cameron Smith (Fort Wayne, Ind.), St. Francis, Ind., 6-1, 200, Sr.;  Shawn Lashbrook (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.), Taylor, 6-4, 202, Sr.

TIGHT END: Hans Lundberg (Houston, Minn.), Taylor, 6-2, 250, Jr.

LINEMEN: Zachary Mitchell (Indianapolis, Ind.), Marian, 6-3, 300, Sr.; Gus Hancock (Spencer, Ind.), St. Francis, Ind., 6-3, 280, Sr.; Logan Glaze (Leo, Ind.), Marian, 6-6, 285, So.; Zach Minardo (Camby, Ind.), St. Francis, Ind., 6-3, 311, Jr.; Keegan Bruner (Warsaw, Ind.), St. Francis, Ind., 6-2, 295, Jr.

PLACEKICKER: Ryan Nix (Valparaiso, Ind.), St. Francis, Ind., 6-2, 206, Jr.

RETURN SPECIALIST: Reggie Blackmon (Fort Wayne, Ind.), Siena Heights, 6-2, 205, Sr.

First Team Defense

LINEMEN: Lucas Sparks (Springfield, Ohio), St. Francis, Ind., 6-2, 239, Jr.; Karrington Thompson (Fort Wayne, Ind.), St. Francis, Ind., 6-2, 258, Sr.; Jamar Wilhite (Indianapolis, Ind.), Marian, 5-10, 220, Sr.;  Donnie Dulaney (Muncie, Ind.), Marian, 6-3, 245, Sr.

LINEBACKER: Ryan Hartnett (Miami, Fla.), Marian, 5-10, 225, Sr.; Piercen Harnish (Ossian, Ind.), St. Francis, Ind., 6-1, 220, Fr.; Spencer Cowherd (Fort Wayne, Ind.), St. Francis, Ind., 6-2, 190, So.; Shaquille Ash (Columbus, Ind.), Marian, 6-0, 215, Jr.

DEFENSIVE BACKS: **Adam Sauder (Leo, Ind.), Taylor, 6-3, 225, Sr.; **Darius Price (Saginaw, Mich.), Siena Heights, 6-2, 215, RS-So.; Cale Tabler (Wapakoneta, Ohio), St. Francis, Ind., 5-10, 180, Sr.; Nick Holshoe (Hopkins, Mich.), Concordia, 6-1, 205, Jr.

PUNTER: Tyler Hach (St. Louis, Mo.), Missouri Baptist, 5-11, 170, So.

Second Team Offense

QB: Hayden Northern (Martinsville, Ind.), Marian, 6-4, 225, Sr. RB: Kam Harris (East St. Louis, Ill.), Lind-Belleville, 5-9, 210, Sr.; Justin Keys (Mendenhall, Miss.), Taylor, 5-10, 220, Sr. WR: Reggie Blackmon (Fort Wayne, Ind.), Siena Heights, 6-2, 205, Sr.; Michael Miller (Parker, Colo.), Taylor, 6-6, 245, Sr.; Corey Turner (Woodhaven, Mich.), Concordia, 6-3, 217, Sr.; Walter Jackson (Pembroke Pines, Fla.), Lind-Belleville, 5-11, 188, Fr. TE: Kalen Petty (St. Louis, Mo.), Mo. Baptist, 6-4, 220, So. LINEMEN: Kendric Thomas (Fort Wayne, Ind.), Siena Heights, 6-1, 275, Sr.; Justin Kulich (Sesser, Ill.), Lind-Belleville, 6-7, 295, RS-Jr.; Alex Woods (Greenwood, Ind.), St. Francis, Ind., 6-2, 261, So.; Brian Gegner (Indianapolis, Ind.), St. Francis, Ind., 6-3, 262, Jr.; Chris Chang (Fishers, Ind.), Taylor, 6-0, 270, Sr. PK: Matthew Plesac (Hobart, Ind.), Marian, 5-10, 160, Fr. RS:  Jakhari Gore (Miami, Fla.), Marian, 5-9, 175, Jr.

Second Team Defense

LINEMEN: Jay Johnson (Aurora, Colo.), Taylor, 6-0, 315, Jr.; Jake Venable (Hamilton, Ohio), Taylor, 6-2, 275, Sr.; Tyaire Bragg (Lansing, Mich.), Siena Heights, 6-2, 265, RS-So.; Dewayne Beckford (Irvington, N.J.), Marian, 6-2, 250, Sr. LB: Nate Yeloushaun (Clarkston, Mich.), Siena Heights, 6-2, 220, Jr.; Blake Wheeler (Springboro, Ohio), Taylor, 6-1, 220, Jr.; Andrew O’Hara (Cleveland, Ohio), Concordia, 6-5, 230, Fr.; Eric Sadowski (Chicago, Ill.), Lind-Belleville, 6-0, 205, So. DB: Jalen McIntyre (Indianapolis, Ind.), St. Francis, Ind., 6-0, 196, So.; Danny Rojas (Indianapolis, Ind.), Marian, 6-1, 195, Sr.; Jeremy Shupperd (Brownsburg, Ind.), Marian, 6-3, 215, So.; Eric Price (Sheridan, Ind.), Marian, 6-0, 185, Jr. P: Brandon Haan (Grand Rapids, Mich.), Taylor, 6-3, 225, Sr.

Honorable Mention

CONCORDIA:  Hunter Cox (Laurel, Md.), DL, 6-1, 245, Jr.; Norman Cyr (Dearborn Heights, Mich.), OL, 6-3, 290, Jr.; Kaleb Pohlman (Liberty Center, Ohio), DL, 6-2, 230, So. LIND-BELLEVILLE:  Cruz Gonzales (Wood River, Ill.), OL, 6-0, 287, RS-So.; Adrian Ming (University Heights, Mo.), DL, 6-1, 317, Sr.; Trey Parker (Belleville, Ill.), DB, 5-6, 178, Jr. MARION: Jimmie Walker (Indianapolis, Ind.), WR, 6-2, 205, Jr.; Ryan Borders (Jamestown, Ind.), OL, 6-4, 285, So.; Dillon Dittemore (Lebanon, Ind.), DL, 6-4, 260, Jr.  MO. BAPTIST: Maleek Ross (Woodridge, Mo.), DE, 6-1, 225, So.; Kevin Gude (Murphysboro, Ill.), LB, 6-0, 235, So.; Connor Bomstad (Dardenne Prairie, Mo.), DB, 5-11, 210, So.  ST. FRANCIS, IND.: Jeffrey Jones (Indianapolis, Ind.), DL, 6-0, 248, Sr.; Seth Stuart (Dayton, Ohio), DT, 5-8, 175, Sr.; Na’Shawn Lewis (Avon, Ind.), DB, 6-1, 194, Jr. SIENA HEIGHTS:  Nic Acton (Battle Creek, Mich.), LB, 6-0, 220, Sr.; Aaron Doriot (Muskegon, Mich.), WR, 6-2, 200, Sr.; Cha’Quan Love (Memphis, Tenn.), DB, 5-8, 190, Jr. TAYLOR: Cameron Gray (Highlands Ranch, Colo.), LB, 5-11, 230, So.;  Tyler Mills (Greenwood, Ind.), DB, 6-1, 200, Sr.; Everett Pollard (Atlanta, Ga.), QB, 6-4, 235, Fr.

OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF YEAR: Nick Ferrer, St. Francis, Ind.     DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF YEAR: Adam Sauder, Taylor

COACH OF THE YEAR: Kevin Donley, Saint Francis, Ind.

ASSISTANT COACH OF THE YEAR: Scott Power, Marian, defensive coordinator


Midwest League

First Team Offense

QUARTERBACK:  John Rhode (Chicago Heights, Ill.), Saint Xavier, 6-0, 200, Jr.

RUNNING BACKS: John Magee (Plainfield, Ill.), St. Francis, Ill., 6-0, 190, Sr.; Raheem Gardner (Hazelcrest, Ill.), Robert Morris, 6-0, 216, Sr.

WIDE RECEIVERS: Stephen Simms (Valparaiso, Ind.), Saint Xavier, 5-8, 175, Jr.; Montre Lee (Oxnard, Calif.), Robert Morris, 5-9, 170, Jr.; **Brad Connor (Bloomington, Ill.), St. Ambrose, 5-9, 185, Jr.; Sheldon Magee (Plainfield, Ill.), St. Francis, Ill., 6-1, 190, Sr.

TIGHT END: Tyler Warden (Glenn Elynn, Ill.), Robert Morris, 6-6, 250, Sr.

LINEMEN: Justin Hunter (Crest Hill, Ill.), Saint Xavier, 6-2, 310, So.; **Kevin Lonergan (Oak Lawn, Ill.), Saint Xavier, 6-2, 270, Jr.; **Cory Chojnowski (Orland Hills, Ill.), Robert Morris, 6-3, 273, Sr.; Zack Webster (Tinley Park, Ill.), St. Francis, Ill., 6-2, 295, Sr.; Brennan Mulroe (New Lenox, Ill.), St. Francis, Ill., 6-2, 270, Fr.

PLACEKICKER: **Matt Cotiguala (Orland Park, Ill.), St. Ambrose, 6-2, 180, Sr.

RETURN SPECIALIST: Stephen Simms (Valparaiso, Ind.), Saint Xavier, 5-8, 175, Jr.

First Team Defense

LINEMEN: Tim Smith (Oregon, Ill.), St. Francis, Ill., 6-3, 245, Jr.; Nick Cemeno (New Lenox, Ill.), Saint Xavier, 6-1, 245, Sr.; Ben Black (Loves Park, Ill.), Robert Morris, 6-0, 261, Sr.; Thomas Dexter (Canal Winchester, Ohio), Olivet Nazarene, 6-2, 220, Sr.

LINEBACKERS:  Dontaye Johnson (Germantown, Md.), Robert Morris, 6-0, 220, Jr.; Jamal Graham (Chicago, Ill.), St. Francis, Ill., 5-10, 200, Sr.; **Dan Fitzgerald (Chicago, Ill.), Saint Xavier, 6-1, 200, Sr.; Sean Murphy (Naperville, Ill.), St. Ambrose, 6-0, 220, Sr.

DEFENSIVE BACKS: Joe Marconi (Wheaton, Ill.), St. Ambrose, 6-0, 195, Jr.; Donte Cobb (Jacksonville, Fla.), St. Francis, Ill., 6-1, 190, Jr.; Moe Almasri (Mokena, Ill.), Robert Morris, 5-11, 166, Jr.; Josh Woodard (Zionsville, Ind.), St. Francis, Ill., 6-2, 190, Soph.

PUNTER: **Matt Cottiglia (Orland Park, Ill.), St. Ambrose, 6-2, 180, Sr.

Second Team Offense

QB: Pat Smith (Springfield, Ill.), St. Ambrose, 6-2, 210, Jr. RB: Chris Elliott (Miami, Fla.), Trinity International, 5-7, 185, Sr.; Nick Bellamy (New Lenox, Ill.), St. Ambrose, 6-2, 230, Jr. WR: Randall Wells (Matteson, Ill.), Saint Xavier, 5-11, 180, Sr.; Ryan Carroll (Evergreen Park, Ill.), Saint Xavier, 6-1, 180, Jr.; Jean Pietrzak (Westmont, Ill.), St. Francis, Ill., 6-4, 200, Soph.;  Adam Glanders (Elkhart, Ind.), Olivet Nazarene, 6-1, 185, So. TE: Dillon Turk (Honolulu, Hawaii), Trinity International, 6-4, 211, Sr. LINEMEN: Sean Jones (Crown Point, Ind.), Saint Xavier, 6-3, 275, Jr.; Chris Edwards (Hanover, Ill.), Robert Morris, 6-0, 283, So.; Connor Hart (Homer Glen, Ill.), Robert Morris, 6-0, 263, Sr.; Brad Steger (Milan, Ill.), St. Ambrose, 6-7, 290, Sr.; Simon Flores (Chicago, Ill.), St. Ambrose, 5-9, 255, Fr. PK: Brian Franklin (Chandler, Ariz.), Robert Morris, 5-11, 160, Jr. RS: Eli Spann (Tampa, Fla.), St. Francis, Ill., 5-8, 165, Soph.

Second Team Defense

LINEMEN: Ali Aqel (Orland Park, Ill.), St. Francis, Ill., 6-5, 250, Sr.; Harrison Hale (Peoria, Ill.), St. Ambrose, 6-0, 225, Jr.; Calvin Brayboy (Bolingbrook, Ill.), St. Francis, Ill., 6-4, 215, Jr.; Ian Riggs (Rockford, Ill.), Robert Morris, 6-2, 215, So.  LB: Mike Mettille (Morris, Ill.), Saint Xavier, 6-2, 220, Sr.; Zack Mathews (Rockford, Ill.), Robert Morris, 6-0, 223, So.; Sebastian Swift (El Cajon, Calif.), Olivet Nazarene, 6-0, 215, So.; Riley Schussler (Wrightstown, Wis.), Trinity International, 6-3, 205, Jr. DB: Doug Ruggles (Mission Viejo, Calif.), Saint Xavier, 6-0, 180, Sr.; Lucas Limberg (Rockford, Ill.), Olivet Nazarene, 6-0, 200, Sr.; Jarrell Carter (Houston, Texas), Trinity International, 5-10, 184, Jr.; Mikail Davis (Peoria, Ill.), St. Francis, Ill., 6-0, 195, Jr.; Jimmy McClinton (Robbins, Ill.), Robert Morris, 6-1, 170, Jr. P: Ivan Strimic (Chicago, Ill.), Robert Morris, 6-0, 190, So.

Honorable Mention

OLIVET NAZARENE: Caleb Coe (Xenia, Ohio), LB, 6-1, 200, Fr.; Zane Burtron (Westfield, Ind.), OL, 6-2, 300, So.; Andrew Manganiello (Lemont, Ill.), DL, 5-10, 260, Jr. ROBERT MORRIS: Tyler Wright (Schneider, Ind.), DL, 6-3, 253, Sr.; Deion Carter (Chicago, Ill.), DB, 5-11, 175, Jr.; Cody Haun (Machesney Park, Ill.), OL, 6-2, 3-6, Sr. SAINT XAVIER: Dmitri Joe (LaGrange Park, Ill.), DL, 6-3, 255, Fr.; Matt Johnson (Rockford, Ill.), DB, 6-1, 195, Jr.; Adam Smith (Glen Ellyn, Ill.), OL, 6-2, 250, Sr. ST. AMBROSE: Liam Sears (Manhattan, Ill.), OL, 6-2, 275, Sr.; Seth Cronin (Rochester, Ill.), LB, 6-1, 215, Sr.; Matt Marston (Glen Ellyn, Ill.), DB, 5-10, 185, Sr. ST. FRANCIS, ILL.: Mike Caladriello (Oak Lawn, Ill.), DL, 6-1, 215, Jr.; Don Butkus (Dyer, Ind.), Fr., 6-0, 190, ; Adam Morrison (Rosemont, Ill.), 6-2, 220, So. TRINITY INTERNATIONAL: Mauricio Portillo (Enumclaw, Wash.), LB, 5-10, 215, So.; Darwin Stone (Crystal Lake, Ill.), S, 5-11, 195, Jr.; Sione Mau (Salt Lake City, Utah), DL, 6-4, 305, Sr.


COACH OF THE YEAR: Joe Curry, St. Francis, Ill.

ASSISTANT COACH OF THE YEAR: Tom Sallay, St. Francis, defensive coordinator

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