Highland, Underwood Land On Sports Network All-America Team
Dec. 18, 2013
PHILADELPHIA - Illinois State junior long snapper Chris Highland and senior defensive end Colton Underwoodwere named to the 2013 FCS All-America Team by The Sports Network, as announced by the organization Wednesday. Highland was named to the second-team and Underwood was a third-team selection.
Highland and Underwood were among 14 players from the Missouri Valley Football Conference named to the team. The MVFC had the most first-team selections with eight and tied with the Big Sky Conference for the most overall selections with 14.
A native of Bloomington, Ill., Highland played in all 11 games as Illinois State's primary long and short snapper and was not credited with a bad snap all season. A pre-season All-America selection by The Sports Network as well, he lived up to the billing as one of the best long snappers in the country and recorded a tackle on special teams on the punt coverage team and recovered a fumble on a punt at No. 1 North Dakota State. Highland was also the W.E. Ruebush Endowed Scholarship recipient for the 2013-14 academic year at ISU.
The All-America honor is the second for Underwood this season, after he was previously named to the 2013 Beyond Sports Network All-America team. A two-time finalist for the Buck Buchanan Award presented by The Sports Network, Underwood was a Missouri Valley Football Conference First-Team selection and led the Redbirds with 12 tackles-for-loss, which ranked seventh in the MVFC.
The Washington, Ill., native also ranked third on the team with 66 total tackles, and added three sacks, five pass breakups, two forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and a blocked kick.
Underwood was a First-Team All-America selection by The Walter Camp Football Foundation, The Associated Press and The Sports Network after his junior season in 2012 and was also a College Sporting News Fabulous Fifty FCS All-America Team selection. With his 2013 recognition, Underwood was one of 21 selections on this year's team with previous All-American postseason status from The Sports Network. Additionally, Underwood was announced as a member of thethe American Football Coaches Association Football Championship Subdivision Coaches’ All-America Team and was a Third-Team All-America selection by the Associated Press.
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