SAU lands four on all-region football team

    5:58 PM, Jan 11, 2013   |    comments
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    MAGNOLIA, Ark. - Southern Arkansas landed four players on the 2012 Don Hansen NCAA Division II All-Super Region 3 football team announced Wednesday by the Don Hansen Football Committee.

    Senior cornerback Don Unamba (Hurst, Texas) highlights the Mulerider contingent as a first team selection. Senior fullback Carlos Brown (Pittsburg, Texas) and junior running back Mark Johnson (Longview, Texas) were second team picks, and junior quarterback Tyler Sykora (Hot Springs Village) is among three quarterbacks honored on the third team.

    Great American Conference champion Henderson State led the way with eight honorees on the team, while NCAA Division II playoff participants Minnesota-Duluth and Northwest Missouri State had seven members selected each. The GAC had a total of 22 players honored on the region team.

    Unamba started all 11 games this season, finishing fifth on the team with 47 tackles (37 solo), including 1.5 for six yards in loss. The senior had three interceptions for 66 yards in return and set the new school record with 17 pass breakups, while also blocking two kicks and recovering a fumble.

    A four-year letterman for SAU, Brown rushed for 419 yards and five touchdowns in 11 games this season, averaging 5.7 yards on 73 carries. The senior was the third leading receiver on the team, catching 30 passes for 354 yards and four touchdowns.

    Johnson led the conference in rushing with 124.9 yards per game, totaling 1,124 on the year on 200 carries, averaging 5.6 yards and scoring 12 touchdowns. He also caught 11 passes for 87 yards.

    A fourth-year junior, Sykora re-wrote the Southern Arkansas record book this season in passing for 3,393 yards and 31 touchdowns, averaging 308.5 yards per game. He completed 61.6 percent of his passes while finishing with a 154.35 efficiency rating.

    By virtue of being a first team all-region selection, Unamba will advance for consideration on the Don Hansen All-American team to be released later.

    The Don Hansen team carries out the legacy of long-time small college football advocate Don Hansen, who passed away at age 75 on August 29, 2010. Hansen, from Brookfield, Ill., started and published Don Hansen's National Weekly Football Gazette for three decades, selecting NCAA Division II All-American teams for the first time in 1988. The gazette began selecting Division II All-Region squads in 2003.

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