On Austin: Returning All-American on the offensive line, who will vye for similar honors as a senior captain ... Comes off shoulder injury in the spring, but will be ready to in the fall ... Can play any of the offensive line positions after playing left guard last two seasons and right tackle in 2004 ... Has worked hard to get into better shape which has allowed him to take that next step ... A talented player with great ability for his size ... A student of the game with exceptional feet ... Versatile player who can play guard, center or tackle ... Excellent student.
As a redshirt junior in 2006: All-American at left guard ... Honored as a member of the Sports Network's Third Team All-American squad ... Named to Don Hansen Football Gazette's Honorable Mention All-American Team ... First-Team Atlantic 10 Offensive Line ... ECAC I-AA First-Team All-Star ... New England Football Writers All-Star Team ... Don Hansen's All-Northeast Region Second Team ... Part of offensive line that allowed just 16 sacks in 2006 in 15 games (1.07 per game, which was first in A-10 and ranked 14th in the nation) ... UMass has led or tied for A-10 lead in fewest sacks allowed in each of last three years with Austin in the line-up ... UMass allowed just 37 sacks in previous 37 games overall ... Started first nine games this year and 14 of 15 at left guard ... Overall has started 30 of the last 34 games ... Aided Steve Baylark in 10 100-yard rushing games as UMass reached National Championship game ... Baylark has averaged 163.0 yards in four NCAA Tournament games with Austin blocking for him ... After missing the Maine (11/11) game due to post-concussion symptoms, returned to action vs. Hofstra (11/18) and helped allow no sacks while Steve Baylark gained 125 rushing yards ... Part of Offensive line that led Baylark to his fourth straight 1,000-yard season, the third player in I-AA to reach that ... UMass had five straight games of more than 450 yards of total offense from Sept. 16-Oct. 21 ... Aided Steve Baylark's first-ever 200-yard game with 235 vs. Rhode Island (10/21) as UMass piled up a season-best 298 net rushing yards and no sacks ... Keyed offensive line that aided UMass' 596-yard total offense showing vs. William & Mary (10/7), including 278 rushing yards ... Key to UMass' 280 net rushing yards vs. Stony Brook (9/23) ... Headed up UMass line that led Steve Baylark to 104-yard effort at Villanova (9/16) ... UMass did not allow a sack in the opener vs. Colgate (9/2) as Minutemen gained 179 rushing yards.
As a redshirt sophomore in 2005: Starting left guard in his second season after serving as the versatile back-up in 2004 ... Started 10 of 11 games ... Mass allowed 11 sacks this season in 11 games (1.0 per game), eighth fewest in the nation and best in the Atlantic 10 ... UMass allowed only one sack every 32 pass attempts in 2005 ... Helped the offensive line to six games with more than 100 rushing yards including five 100-yard games by Steve Baylark ... Aided Steve Baylark's three consecutive 100-yard games at Maine (10/22), vs. New Hampshire (10/29) and at Delaware (11/5) ... Sat out the Albany (9/17) game with an injury, after starting vs. Richmond (9/1) and at Colgate (9/10).
As a redshirt freshman in 2004: Reserve lineman who saw action in all 11 games, starting the last six at right tackle ... Part of line that allowed one sack every 38 pass attempt, the best ratio in the nation ... Based on coaches' grading system, earned an 82 percent mark for his work on assignments, technique, hands and feet ... Allowed just one sack all season ... Had 35 knockdowns ... Served as the backup across the offensive line early in the season ... Made first career start in place of injured O.J. McBride at right tackle at James Madison (10/9), also long-snapped on kicks in that game ... Started at New Hampshire (10/16) as Steve Baylark piled up career-high 192 rushing yards ... Wore a "red shirt" in practice which normal starters wear -- to denote his progress as a near starter early in the season.
As a freshman in 2003: Redshirted.
Before UMass: Played for Coach Tom Kasprzak at Reading Memorial High School ... Two-way starter on both the offensive and defensive lines, in addition to serving as the long snapper ... All-State selection as a senior ... First team Middlesex League All-Star during both his junior and senior seasons ... Earned All-Scholastic honors from both the Boston Globe and the Boston Herald ... Served as team captain during his senior year ... Also a member of the indoor and outdoor track & field teams at Reading Memorial, throwing the shot put and the discus ... Earned Middlesex League All-Star honors in the discus.
Personal: Matthew Bruce Austin ... Born November 10, 1984, in Winchester, Mass. ... Son of Bruce and Barbara Austin ... Brother of Heather and Alison ... Majoring in Sport Management.