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  College Player Notes by Position: SS
Previous 25 SS Notes Next 25 SS Notes

02/14/19- DCota Dixon, rSr, Wisconsin, 5-10, 202
Wisconsin's D'Cota Dixon has been selected as the Jason Witten Collegiate Man of the Year. Former Dallas Cowboys tight end Jason Witten presented Dixon with the award at a ceremony Tuesday in Frisco, Texas. The Jason Witten Collegiate Man of the Year Award is awarded to the Football Bowl Subdivision player who best demonstrates an outstanding record of leadership by exhibiting exceptional courage, integrity, and sportsmanship.

"I am honored to present the second annual Collegiate Man of the Year to D'Cota Dixon," said Witten. "He is a truly outstanding young man, who is everything you want in a college football player. He has set himself apart as a true leader on his team, on campus and in the community. He is the perfect example of someone who has devoted himself to becoming the very best person he can be, despite going through great personal struggles." Dixon, a senior safety, is a three-year starter who was named first-team All-Big Ten last year. He also has been honored with the 2017 Wilma Rudolph Student-Athlete Achievement Award and the 2017 FWAA/Orange Bowl Courage Award. Dixon was a 2018 National Football Foundation National Scholar-Athlete and a finalist for the William V. Campbell Trophy often called the "Academic Heisman." - Wisconsin Football

02/11/19- Kyriq McDonald, rFr, Alabama, 5-10, 197
Two Alabama players are exploring transfers. Reserve defensive back Kyriq McDonald and long snapper Scott Meyer entered the NCAA transfer portal on Monday, according to a source. McDonald played in 11 games as a redshirt freshman for the Crimson Tide last season and was twice recognized as one of Alabama's special teams players of the week. Meyer was the Tide's snapper for field goals and extra points as a redshirt freshman in 2017 but only played in one game last year as Thomas Fletcher handled all of the long snapping. - Matt Zenitz, AL.com

01/29/19- Deangelo Gibbs, rSo, Tennessee, 6-1, 205
Former Georgia defensive back Deangelo Gibbs is transferring to Tennessee. Gibbs tweeted Friday that "I am 100% committed to giving everything I have to the #VolNation." The Tennessee football program's official Twitter account sent out a tweet with Gibbs in a Tennessee uniform along with the message "Welcome To Rocky Top." Gibbs, who is listed as 6-foot-1 and 205 pounds, played seven games for Georgia as a sophomore this past season and made seven tackles. He appeared in six games as a freshman in 2017 and made three tackles. Georgia coach Kirby Smart had announced during the early signing period last month that Gibbs was "not currently with the team" without providing more details. Gibbs isn't a graduate transfer, so it is expected that he will have to sit out the 2019 season before playing for Tennessee. - AP College Football

01/05/19- *Amani Hooker, Jr, Iowa, 5-11, 210
Iowa junior defensive back Amani Hooker says he will enter the NFL draft. Hooker, a first-team All-Big Ten pick and the league's defensive back of the year, announced Saturday on social media that he's leaving school early and turning pro. The 6-foot, 210-pound Hooker starred as a hybrid safety/linebacker for the Hawkeyes (9-4) in 2018, picking off three passes while making 65 total tackles. He had six tackles in Tuesday's 27-22 win over Mississippi State in the Outback Bowl. - AP College Football

01/02/19- *Taylor Rapp, Jr, Washington, 6-0, 200
Washington safety Taylor Rapp has declared for the NFL draft, giving up his final year of eligibility after being a second-team AP All-America selection. Rapp's decision, announced on Wednesday, was expected after he received a high evaluation from the NFL College Advisory Committee. Rapp is expected to be an early-round selection. Rapp was a first-team All-Pac-12 selection the past two seasons and was the conference's defensive freshman of the year in 2016. He finished his junior season with 59 tackles, three fumble recoveries and two interceptions. Rapp did not play in the Rose Bowl due to a hip injury suffered in the Pac-12 championship game and his absence was felt in the 28-23 loss to Ohio State. Rapp went through pregame warmups but never took the field. - AP College Football

11/21/18- Anthony Gore Jr., rSr, Kennesaw State, 5-11, 201
2018 BIG SOUTH DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Anthony Gore Jr., LB, R-Sr., Kennesaw State,...Gore is the first Kennesaw State player to be voted the conference's Defensive Player of the Year. A finalist for the Buck Buchanan Award as the nation's top defensive player, Gore recorded 61 total tackles during the regular-season -- including 45 solo stops.A member of the nation's third-ranked defense, Gore ranks second in the Big South with 5.0 sacks, while his 9.0 tackles-for-loss are fifth overall in the league. He had nine tackles (eight solo) and two sacks in KSU's five-overtime win over nationally-ranked Jacksonville State in the regular-season finale, posted nine solo stops in the season opener at Georgia State, had eight solo hits among his nine tackles in a win over Samford, and recorded a TFL in eight of his 11 games this season. Gore is part of a defensive unit that leads the Big South in scoring defense (14.8) and total defense (262.2), both of which are pacing ahead of the conference's single-season records. Gore received nine first-place votes and 24 points in the voting to edge out Charleston Southern defensive lineman Solomon Brown (20 points and five first-place votes) for the defensive honor. - Big South Football

11/19/18- Kamren Curl, So, Arkansas, 6-1, 201
DB Kamren Curl has been suspended for the season-ending game against Missouri. Ryan Pulley also was suspended. "They will not be here today or yesterday or any part of this week for unacceptable behavior, actions that are completely unacceptable to anything we're about," Morris said. Morris did not specify the violations that warranted the suspensions, but the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported that Pulley and Curl were seen talking to and having their pictures taken with members of the Mississippi State cheer squad before Saturday's game. Former Arkansas All-American tight end DJ Williams, who is now a TV reporter, was the person who witnessed the interaction, according to the report.

11/19/18- J.T. Hassell, rSr, Florida Tech, 6-0, 200
2018 GULF SOUTH CONFERENCE DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: J.T. Hassell, Florida Tech,...Hassell is now a two-time All-GSC selection after leading the Florida Tech defense to the Panthers' second NCAA Division II postseason berth in program history. Hassell is the top tackler the conference with 105 stops, including 69 solo tackles and 15 tackles for a loss of yards. He also forced three fumbles on the year, putting him in a four-way tie for the league lead in that category. He is the second Panther in program history to win this award (J.J. Sanders, 2015). - Gulf South Conference Football

11/19/18- Cody Leonard, Sr, Quincy, 5-11, 192
2018 GLVC DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Cody Leonard, Sr., LB, Quincy,...Leonard is the first Quincy standout to earn GLVC Defensive Player of the Year honors, and is the fourth straight linebacker and sixth overall to earn the accolade. The Carrollton, Illinois native led all NCAA Division II defenders this season with 168 tackles and averages of 15.3 stops and 8.0 solo hits per game. Within the GLVC, the closest defender in terms of total tackles was 66 stops behind Leonard. In the final game of his career, Leonard broke the GLVC record for tackles in a game with 24 stops, including 11 solo hits.

The unanimous first-team All-GLVC selection shattered the previous league record for single-season tackles with 168, a mark that was previous set by McKendree's A.J. Wentland with 145 stops in 2016. His average of 15.3 tackles per game also bested Wentland's league record of 13.5 set in 2015. His school-record 376 career tackles lands him fourth all-time in GLVC history, while his 88 solo stops and 223 solo tackles were Quincy single-season and career records, respectively. Leonard is the second Hawk to have earned one of the league's major postseason awards as Chris Harris was the unanimous Freshman of the Year in 2014. - Great Lakes Valley Conference Football

11/17/18- Mike Edwards, rSr, Kentucky, 5-11, 204
Mike Edwards' early takeaways helped stake Kentucky to its initial lead. Linebacker Josh Allen then made sure the 20th-ranked Wildcats held on with clutch sacks late. Seniors are expected to stand out in their home finales, and veterans certainly factored in a tenser-than-expected victory against Middle Tennessee. Edwards' two turnovers led to Kentucky's first two touchdowns, and the Wildcats overcame a second-half lull to make several fourth-quarter defensive stops and escape with a 34-23 win on Saturday. Kentucky (8-3) ended a two-game slide but had to survive the Blue Raiders' rally within 31-23 early in the fourth. Allen, the Southeastern Conference's sacks leader, dropped Brent Stockstill for a 7-yard loss on fourth down and set up Miles Butler's 32-yard field goal with 4:01 remaining for an 11-point edge. - AP College Football

11/14/18- Sterling Hammond, Jr, Virginia Union, 6-0, 210
2018 ALL-CIAA FIRST TEAM: Defensive Back - Sterling Hammond, Virginia Union,...Ten members of the Virginia Union University football team have been selected to the 2018 All-CIAA Team, the CIAA announced on Friday, November 9. VUU's Shamdu Nalls, Tabyus Taylor, Jefferson Souza and Sterling Hammond were named First Team All-CIAA. Hammond, a junior defensive back from Caret, Va., had 55 tackles this past season. He also had four interceptions and recovered four fumbles, scoring touchdowns on two occasions. - Virginia Union Football

11/14/18- Quantaye Battle, rJr, Virginia Union, 6-1, 210
2018 ALL-CIAA SECOND TEAM: Defensive Back - Quantaye Battle, Virginia Union,...Virginia Union's Khari Johnson, Tyrone Glanton, Quantaye Battle, Taj Conway and Jaiden Reavis were named Second Team All-CIAA. Battle, a junior defensive back from Baltimore, Md., had 41 tackles and nine pass breakups this season. - Virginia Union Football

11/12/18- Jalen Johnson, rSr, Georgia Tech, 6-2, 215
NOV 12 ACC LINEBACKER OF THE WEEK: Jalen Johnson, Georgia Tech, Sr., OLB; Oneonta, Ala.,...Johnson turned in perhaps the finest performance of his career with a team-high-tying eight tackles and a game-high two tackles for loss in Georgia Tech's 27-21 win over Miami ... Johnson's two tackles for loss were a career high, while his eight stops were just one shy of his career high of nine, set the previous week at North Carolina ... Making Johnson's tallies even more impressive is the fact that Georgia Tech limited Miami to just 53 offensive plays. - ACC Football

11/12/18- Roderic Teamer Jr., Sr, Tulane, 5-11, 205
NOV 12 AMERICAN ATHLETIC CONFERENCE DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Roderic Teamer Jr., Tulane, Sr., S, New Orleans, La.,...Teamer had a team-high 10 tackles to go with a sack and two pass breakups to help the Green Wave to a 24-18 win against ECU. Teamer led a defense that set an NCAA single-game record with 20 pass breakups and held the Pirates to 31-percent passing on 67 attempts. - American Athletic Conference Football

11/11/18- Dylan Singleton, Jr, Duke, 5-11, 190
Duke says safety Dylan Singleton is out indefinitely with a broken left ankle. Team spokesman Art Chase said Singleton had surgery Sunday to repair the injury suffered a day earlier in a 42-35 victory over North Carolina. He's the 15th player with starting experience to miss at least one game this season due to injury. The junior had started all 10 games and had 73 tackles, and had four games with at least 10 tackles. Duke (7-3, 3-3 Atlantic Coast Conference) visits No. 2 Clemson on Saturday night. - AP College Football

11/10/18- Cam Hilton, Sr, Missouri, 6-0, 190
When Missouri kicker Tucker McCann missed a 31-yard field goal to the left with 1:48 remaining in the game, the possibility opened up that Missouri could lose its third last-second contest of the season. The Tigers were up 33-28. Quarterback Kyle Shurmur led Vanderbilt 55 yards down the field, setting up for a play on Missouri's 25-yard line with five seconds remaining. When the final pass came down untouched, Missouri had won its sixth game, becoming bowl-eligible for the second season in a row. The Tigers exhaled. "I instantly just fell down on my knees and said 'thank you God'," Missouri running back Damarea Crockett said. Missouri's defense bent but didn't break during Vanderbilt's final drive. "I was wishing it was over before then," Missouri head coach Barry Odom said. "But I had trust in what was called. I'm proud that our team ended up winning it on that last play." In the end, the Tigers (6-4, 2-4 Southeastern Conference) are going bowling, and the Commodores (4-6, 1-5) will need to win both its remaining games to guarantee bowl eligibility. - AP College Football

11/05/18- Todd Kelly Jr., rSr, Tennessee, 5-11, 200
FS Todd Kelly Jr. is returning to his old form after rejoining the secondary three games ago. The senior has 14 tackles, including seven against Charlotte. Kelly amassed 157 career tackles and eight interceptions before a knee injury claimed all but two games last year and the first six of the 2018 campaign.

11/05/18- Mike Edwards, rSr, Kentucky, 5-11, 204
S Mike Edwards was in double figures in tackles for the first time this season with 11 stops against Georgia. It was his 10th double-digit effort in the senior's career and left him seven tackles short of the 300 mark for his stay with the Wildcats. He may have a bit more responsibility this week with S Darius West sitting out the first half after being ejected for targeting last week.

11/05/18- Alvin Floyd, rFr, Ohio, 5-10, 193
NOV 5 MAC EAST DIVISION SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Ohio S Alvin Floyd,...Ohio redshirt freshman safety Alvin Floyd (North Miami Beach, Fla.) returned a blocked punt for a touchdown in a 59-14 win at Western Michigan on Thursday, Nov. 1. Floyd became the first Bobcat to return a blocked punt for a touchdown since Melvin Payne ran one back for a score in 2009 at Akron. With just under three minutes to play in the first quarter, junior special teams ace DL Knock blocked a punt by Western Michigan's Nick Mihalic, and the loose football was scooped up by Floyd and returned 13 yards for a touchdown to help extend Ohio's lead to 21-0. Floyd's touchdown return helped the Bobcats pile up 45 first-half points en route to the victory the most scored in one half during 14th-year head coach Frank Solich's tenure. - MAC Football

11/03/18- Leodis Moore III, rJr, Eastern Kentucky, 5-09, 190
Parker McKinney led the go-ahead drive late in the fourth quarter and Eastern Kentucky held on to beat Austin Peay 17-13 on Saturday night. McKinney entered the game in the fourth quarter in relief of Alphonso Howard and finished 7 of 8 for 89 yards, a touchdown and no interceptions. His 20-yard touchdown pass to Dan Paul capped a six-play, 71-yard drive that gave the Colonels a four-point lead with 4:29 left. Eastern Kentucky (5-4, 4-2 Ohio Valley Conference) stopped Austin Peay on downs on the next possession and TJ Comstock sealed the win with an interception of Jeremiah Oatsvall's pass with 25 seconds left. The Colonels trailed 13-3 at halftime and Leodis Moore III intercepted Oatsvall's pass and returned it 35 yards for a score in the middle of the third quarter. Oatsvall was 9 of 23 for 73 yards, no touchdowns and three interceptions for Austin Peay (4-5, 2-4). He also ran for 73 yards and a score. - AP College Football

10/29/18- Mykelti Williams, rJr, Northern Illinois, 5-11, 208
OCT 29 MAC WEST DIVISION DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Northern Illinois DB Mykelti Williams...Northern Illinois junior safety Mykelti Williams (Indianapolis, Ind.) was part of a spectacular defensive effort in a 7-6 win at BYU on Saturday afternoon. Williams came up with a critical interception with less than two minutes left in the fourth quarter and BYU looking to drive for a game-winning field goal. Williams' interception, his first of the year, returned the ball to NIU with 1:47 on the clock and allowed the Huskies to close out the one-point victory. Williams also made five tackles, four solo, in the game and had a pass break-up. The Huskies held BYU without a touchdown, limited them to 3-of-15 on third downs and held them to 93 rushing yards. - MAC Football

10/23/18- McAllister Ingram, So, Elon, 5-10, 191
SEPT 10 CAA FOOTBALL DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: McAllister Ingram, So., DB, Elon (Thomasville, N.C./Ledford)...Ingram recorded a career-high 11 tackles, one tackle for loss, a pass breakup and a key forced fumble as Elon rolled past No. 25/21 Furman, 45-7. On the second play of the game, the sophomore forced a fumble that was returned 18 yards for a touchdown. Ingram's 11 tackles shattered his previous career-high of five. Elon held Furman to 262 total yards and didn't allow a point until the final seven minutes. - Colonial Athletic Association Football

10/22/18- Grant Delpit, So, LSU, 6-2, 203
OCT 22 SEC DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Grant Delpit, S, LSU...Led LSU with 10 tackles to go with a sack for an 8-yard loss and a pair of interceptions in the 19-3 win over Mississippi State...His sack came on fourth-and-three at the LSU 37 to end that third quarter drive, while his second interception came at LSU 5-yard line late in fourth quarter...Overall, defensive leader that helped hold the Bulldogs to 260 total yards, including 59 through the air ... Mississippi State was 2-of-14 on third-down opportunities...After giving up a field goal on State's second possession, the Bulldogs' final 11 possessions of the game ended with 7 punts, three interceptions and a turnover on downs. - SEC Football

10/22/18- Nick Roberts, rFr, South Florida, 5-11, 183
OCT 22 AMERICAN ATHLETIC CONFERENCE HONOR ROLL: Nick Roberts, USF, Fr., DB,...Had 10 tackles and a 61-yard interception return in a 38-30 win against UConn. - American Athletic Conference Football

10/15/18- Khari Willis, Sr, Michigan State, 5-11, 213
OCT 15 BIG TEN DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Khari Willis, Michigan State, Sr., S, Jackson, Mich./Lumen Christi...Led the Spartans with a season-high nine tackles, including seven solo stops, in the team's victory at Penn State...Forced a fumble on Penn State quarterback Trace McSorley in the first quarter and also recorded a pass break-up...Helped the Spartans hold Penn State to season lows in points (17) and first downs (14)...Receives his first career Defensive Player of the Week honor...Last Michigan State Defensive Player of the Week: Joe Bachie (Oct. 23, 2017). - Big Ten Football

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