Rivals.com: UMass Football's Tyler Holmes Earns Preseason All-American Nod
June 3, 2011
For the second time in less than a month, I've ended up writing on Massachusetts Minutemen linebacker Tyler Holmes, and with good reason. Holmes was recently named a FCS Preseason All-American by both The Sports Network and Lindy's. Holmes made the cut for the national defense first-team heading into the preseason.
When it comes to praise for Holmes, past is prologue. The star linebacker was named to the CAA conference preseason first team at around this time last year. By the time the 2010 season ended, Holmes was an AP First-Team All-American and the CAA's Defensive Player of the Year.
Of course, those are just a few of the seemingly countless honors Holmes received for his play in 2010. Suffice it to say, the UMass linebacker is not only a team standout, he's one of the most talented players ever to wear maroon and white. The fact that TSN and Lindy's named him an All-American this year comes as no surprise. Having seen the team go from the heights of being conference champs twice in a row during my junior and senior years on campus between 2006 and 2007, to a 5-6 record in 2009, I know just how valuable a player like Holmes is.
It was during the 2008 season that Holmes first played with the Minutemen, when the team would end up with a 7-5 record. The only real freshman on the team that year, Holmes played in six games, and it quickly became obvious that he was a rising star. Holmes had 23 tackles before his first season was over, and got a seven yard interception when the Minutemen faced off against Hofstra in the year's last game.
The good news is that students and alumni like me can count on Holmes to help the Minutemen end their very last FCS season on a high note. Although the team is ineligible for the postseason this year (due to the impending move to the FBS), there's no reason why they shouldn't go out showing the CAA what they're made of. The downside is that it's also Holmes's last year with UMass. He'll be a senior during the 2011 season, and won't be on the roster when the Minutemen make the move the MAC in 2012.
Taurus Londono has lived in Massachusetts for over ten years. He became a lifelong fan of UMass sports after seeing the Minutemen become champs during his time on campus.