Holmes Named CAA Co-Defensive Player Of Year

Greg Niland was one of three UMass Players named to the CAA First Team.

Greg Niland was one of three UMass Players named to the CAA First Team.

Junior linebacker Tyler Holmes was named the CAA Co-Defensive Player of the Year on Monday. He was also named to the CAA First-Team along with senior receiver Anthony Nelson and senior lineman Greg Niland. Junior tailback Jonathan Hernandez and junior receiver Julian Talley were on the second team and senior tailback John Griffin took third-team honors. Holmes is the first UMass player to earn league defensive player of the year honors since Shannon James was the Atlantic 10's top player in 2004. Prior to James, the last honoree was Brian Corcoran in 1994.

Here is the full release and team from the CAA.

RICHMOND, Va. (November 22, 2010) -- CAA Football, which placed a national best four in the 2010 NCAA Division I Football National Championships for the third time since 2004, announced its 2010 All-Conference honors Monday.

The awards, voted on by the 10 CAA Football head coaches, were handed out following a 2010 season which saw seven teams ranked among the Top 25 for a record nine-straight weeks.  Within that same span the league also saw five of its own among the Top 10 in four-straight weeks.  CAA Football also extended its string of wins against FBS opponents to eight in the last nine seasons.

Delaware senior quarterback Pat Devlin was chosen as the 2010 CAA Football Offensive Player of the Year.  The league's Defensive Player of the Year honor was awarded to both Massachusetts junior linebacker Tyler Holmes and Richmond senior linebacker Eric McBride.  William and Mary junior kick returner Jonathan Grimes logged CAA Football Special Teams Player of the Year honors and Rhode Island second-year head coach Joe Trainer picked up the CAA Football Coach of the Year award.  Delaware freshman running back Andrew Pierce and James Madison linebacker Stephon Robertson were the league's Offensive and Defensive Rookies of the Year, respectively.

Devlin was the Blue Hens' offensive leader enroute to a share of the 2010 CAA Football crown.  The Downingtown, Pa., native is tops in the league and sixth nationally in passing efficiency over 10 of Delaware's 11 games with a mark of 151.3.  Devlin, one of 10 finalists for the Unitas Golden Arm Award, ranks second in the league averaging 215.8 yards passing per contest.  The senior, one of the 20 finalists for The Sports Network/ Walter Payton Player of the Year Award, heads into next weekend's postseason after completing 179 of 266 passes for 2,158 yards and 14 touchdowns.

Holmes and McBride are two of the league's four Buck Buchanan Defensive Player of the Year finalists.  Holmes, a Blacksburg, Va., native finished his junior campaign with 110 tackles and five sacks in 11 contests.  He also tied for the league lead in interceptions after hauling in five over 11 games, including two returned for touchdowns in the same contest.  McBride, who ended his Richmond career with 54-straight starts at linebacker, ranks second in the league with 118 tackles in 11 games.  The three-time First Team All-CAA Football honoree also leads the league in recovered fumbles with three.

Grimes, one of the most decorated student-athletes in CAA Football history having now earned eight honors in just three seasons, ranks second in the league with a mark of 25.3 yards per kickoff return.  The junior leads the conference with 1,428 all-purpose yards on the season and is 12 yards shy of landing on the CAA Football career Top 10 all-purpose yards list.  On top of his special teams duties, the Palmyra, N.J., native also ranks fifth in the league with 787 rushing yards for a William and Mary squad which won a share of the league title.

Trainer took the reigns at Rhode Island in 2009, and after going winless in the league last season, led the Rams to a 4-4 mark in CAA Football play in 2010.  The second-year Rhody leader saw seven student-athletes win All-CAA Football recognition, including two First Team picks.  Trainer, a long-time assistant under current Villanova head coach Andy Talley, finished the year with a mark of 3-3 against ranked foes including wins over No. 8 New Hampshire and No. 3 Villanova.  The Rams special teams led CAA Football and ranked among the nation's Top 15 in kickoff returns averaging 23.8 yards a return.

Pierce made a name for himself within the Delaware offensive scheme immediately when he opened the season with four-straight 100-yard rushing games.  The Bridgeton, N.J., native, who eclipsed the 1,000-yard rushing mark in week 10, enters the postseason with a league-best 1,149 rushing yards and 12 touchdowns on 234 carries.  Pierce garnered six CAA Football Rookie of the Week honors and another Offensive Player of the Week award pushing his total to a league record seven weekly honors in just one season.

Robertson, a two-time CAA Football Rookie of the Week winner, was the second leading tackler on a Dukes defense which ranked second in the league in total defense.  The Alexandria, Va., native had a game-high 13 stops in James Madison's epic win over then-nationally ranked Virginia Tech in September.  The freshman also forced a Darren Evans' fumble with five minutes left in the game which gave the ball back to the Dukes and allowed them to ice the contest.  Robertson, who finished the season averaging nine tackles a game, ranked among the league's best in forcing fumbles with three.



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2010 CAA Football Major Awards (as voted on by the head coaches)

OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR -- Pat Devlin, Delaware, Sr., QB, Downingtown, Pa.
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR -- Tyler Holmes, Massachusetts, Jr., LB, Blacksburg, Va.
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR -- Eric McBride, Richmond, Sr., LB, Richmond, Va.
SPECIAL TEAMS PLAYER OF THE YEAR -- Jonathan Grimes, William and Mary, Jr., KR, Palmyra, N.J.
OFFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR -- Andrew Pierce, Delaware, Fr., RB, Bridgeton, N.J.
DEFENSIVE ROOKIE OF THE YEAR -- Stephon Robertson, James Madison, Fr., LB, Alexandria, Va.
COACH OF THE YEAR -- Joe Trainer, Rhode Island, Two Seasons

2010 All-CAA Football First Team (as voted on by the head coaches)
Position Player School Class
QB Pat Devlin Delaware Senior
RB Jonathan Grimes William and Mary  Junior
RB Andrew Pierce Delaware Freshman
FB/HB Kendall Gaskins Richmond Sophomore
FB/HB Jimmy Hobson William and Mary Senior
WR Terrance Fox New Hampshire Senior
WR Tre Gray Richmond Junior
WR Anthony Nelson Massachusetts Senior
WR Norman White Villanova Junior
TE Alex Gottlieb William and Mary Junior
OL Brant Clouser Villanova Senior
OL Gino Gradkowski Delaware Junior
OL Keith Hill, Jr. William and Mary Senior
OL Ben Ijalana Villanova Senior
OL Greg Niland Massachusetts Senior
PK Wil Kamin Richmond Sophomore
KR Travis Hurd Rhode Island Freshman
PR Justin Rogers Richmond Senior
Position Player School Class
DL Victor Adesanya Rhode Island Senior
DL Ronnell Brown James Madison Senior
DL Brian McNally New Hampshire Junior
DL Martin Parker Richmond Senior
LB Tyler Holmes Massachusetts Junior
LB Marquis Kirkland Villanova Senior
LB Eric McBride Richmond Senior
LB Terence Thomas Villanova Senior
CB Justin Rogers Richmond Senior
CB Dino Vasso New Hampshire Senior
CB B.W. Webb William and Mary Sophomore
S Anthony Bratton Delaware Senior
S Hugo Souza New Hampshire Senior
P David Miller William and Mary Senior
2010 All-CAA Football Second Team (as voted on by the head coaches)
Position Player School Class
QB Chris Whitney Villanova Senior
RB Jonathan Hernandez Massachusetts Junior
RB Jamal Sullivan James Madison Senior
FB/HB Tyler Wharton Towson Junior
WR Ryan Moody William and Mary Sophomore
WR Hakeem Moore Towson Senior
WR Julian Talley Massachusetts Junior
TE Derek Buttles Maine Junior
OL Roane Babington James Madison Junior
OL Drew Lachenmayer Richmond Senior
OL Rob McDowell Delaware Junior
OL Seth Price New Hampshire Senior
OL Theo Sherman James Madison Senior
PK Mike Perry Delaware Junior
KR Jonathan Grimes William and Mary Junior
PR B.W. Webb William and Mary Sophomore
Position Player School Class
DL Siddiq Haynes Delaware Senior
DL Marcus Hyde William and Mary Junior
DL Yaky Ibia Towson Senior
DL Michael Stover William and Mary Senior
LB Dante Cook William and Mary Sophomore
LB Matt Evans New Hampshire Sophomore
LB Matt Hansen Rhode Island Senior
LB Matt Marcorelle Delaware Senior
CB Tyrone Grant Delaware Senior
CB Anthony Walters Delaware Senior
S Fred Maldonado Villanova Senior
S Jerron McMillian Maine Junior
P Dominic Scarnecchia Villanova Junior
2010 All-CAA Football Third Team (as voted on by the head coaches)
Position Player School Class
QB R.J. Toman New Hampshire Senior
RB Aaron Ball Villanova Senior
RB John Griffin Massachusetts Senior
RB Dontra Peters New Hampshire Sophomore
WR Anthony Baskerville Rhode Island Junior
WR Chase Hill William and Mary Senior
WR Derek Session Maine Junior
TE Colin Naugle Delaware Junior
OL Shea Allard Delaware Junior
OL Kyle Bogumil Rhode Island Junior
OL Jason Foster Rhode Island Junior
OL Chris Howley Maine Sophomore
OL James Pagliaro William and Mary Junior
OL Dan Shirey Villanova Sophomore
PK Mike MacArthur New Hampshire Freshman
KR Steven Barker Maine Senior
PR Dae'Quan Scott James Madison Freshman
Position Player School Class
DL Michael Atunrase Delaware Junior
DL Frank Beltre Towson Sophomore
DL Antoine Lewis Villanova Freshman
DL Thomas Weaver Villanova Senior
DL Steve Young New Hampshire Senior
LB Donte Blakey Towson Senior
LB Donte Dennis Maine Junior
LB Stephon Robertson James Madison Freshman
LB Paul Worrilow Delaware Sophomore
CB James Pitts Villanova Junior
CB Jarrod Williams Rhode Island Senior
S John Dempsey Villanova Senior
S Darryl Jones Delaware Senior
P Ed Wagner Delaware Senior

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