Holmes, Igwenagu On Phil Steele's CAA 1st Team
June 29, 2010
AMHERST, Mass. - Rising juniors lineback Tyler Holmes and tight end Emil Igwenagu were both named to the Phil Steele Magazine CAA First Team in the preseason annual. Joining them on the second team are tailback John Griffin, guard Josh Samuda and wide receiver Julian Talley.
The preseason honors continue to roll in for Holmes, who was a member of the All-CAA Second Team last season. Holmes, who was a second-team All-CAA selection, led UMass in tackles with 110 (second in CAA and eighth in NCAA) 11.0 per game in 10 starts in 2009. He was the team leader in interceptions with four and team-best nine passes defended.
He was the team leader in interceptions with four and team-best nine passes defended. He also had 6.5 TFLs for 14 yards. Holmes finished fourth in CAA in interceptions per game (0.44 per game). In the last six games he played in 2009, he had 78 tackles (13.0 per game). Holmes had five games during season with 10 or more tackles.
A converted fullback, who plays tight end and H-Back, Igwenagu tied for third on team with 23 catches for 283 yards and a TD, playing in all 11 games with three starts last season. He enters 2010 with a catch in nine games in a row including a streak of six games with at least two catches (Sept. 19-Oct. 31).
Griffin, a transfer from Northeastern and a first-team All-CAA pick in 2009, will see lots of time this season in the backfield in maroon and white. Last year with the Huskies, he ran for 1,009 yards on 207 carries with five touchdowns, while catching 25 passes for 178 yards. He was named First Team All-CAA, Northeastern's Most Valuable Player and Most Improved Player. He was named to the 2009 New England Football Writers Football Championship Subdivision All-Star team.
Samuda was a 2009 College Sporting News Preseason First Team All-American. He started all 11 games during the year at left guard. UMass allowed 17 sacks (1.55 per game), 38th in the NCAA, 3rd in CAA. UMass had a 100-yard rusher in seven games this season (five by Tony Nelson and two by Jonathan Hernandez).
Talley was second on team in catches with 28 and yards with 350 yards in 11 games, four starts in 2009. He had 14 kickoff returns for 282 yards this season (20.1 per return).
UMass opens the 2010 season vs. William & Mary on Sept. 4 at McGuirk Stadium. Call 1-866-UMASS-TIX for tickets.