NM State Football Earns Six All-WAC Honors
The New Mexico State football team garnered six All-WAC awards as announced by the Western Athletic Conference office, Monday morning. This is the most all-conference honors that the Aggies have received since joining the WAC in 2005. It is also the most all-conference selections that NM State has earned since the 2004 season.
Senior safety Donyae Coleman and senior kick returner Taveon Rogers were named first team selections, while Rogers was named a second team wide receiver, along with junior running back Kenny Turner, sophomore offensive lineman Davonte Wallace and senior defensive back Jonte Green.
“I think these six All-WAC awards are attributed to the plan that we are putting together as we continue to build our program,” head coach DeWayne Walker said. “Obviously all these kids are seniors with the exception of Wallace and Turner, so this is probably our strongest senior class in terms of leadership and production since we have been at NM State. This gives us a lot to look forward to going into 2012. We need to have a good recruiting class to help us continue to build our program in the right direction. The bar has been raised for seasons to come. I know this season’s motto was ‘Believe and Compete’ but I really believe that next year we can talk more about this team being on the rise. I’m extremely proud of this team and I look forward to next season.”
Coleman (Lynwood, Calif.) led the Aggies in tackles with 133 in 2011, while leading the team and the league in interceptions with six. Coleman also led the league in fumble recoveries with three, while tallying seven pass break-ups and three forced fumbles. On the season, Coleman had seven double-digit tackle games, including two games with 23 tackles or more.
Rogers (Lancaster, Calif.) was the team’s leading kick returner with 1,318 yards and three touchdowns. He leaves NM State as the all-time leader in kick returns for a career (103), kick return yardage (2,728) and most kick returns for a touchdown (3). He also led the nation in all-purpose yards per game with 196.3, which leads the league. Rogers also led the Aggies in receiving in 2011 with 59 catches for 1,048 yards and nine touchdowns, averaging 17.8 yards a catch and 87.3 yards a game. Against Fresno State, Rogers recorded a school record 412 all-purpose yards.
Turner (Orlando, Fla.) led the Aggies with 1,074 yards rushing in 2011, becoming just the second NM State running back since the 2000 season to rush for over 1,000 yards. Tuner would account for 10 rushing touchdowns on the year as well, while averaging 82.6 yards a game, which was fourth in the WAC. He also finished second on the team in receiving with 46 catches for 514 yards and three touchdowns.
Wallace (El Paso, Texas) helped the Aggie offense rush for 1,625 yards and 16 touchdowns in 2011, as well as 3,550 yards and 24 touchdowns passing. On the season, Wallace tallied 52 knockdowns and allowed just three sacks. He helped block for an offense that averaged 398.1 yards a game, while leading the way for Turner to rush for over 1,000 yards on the season.
Green (St. Petersburg, Fla.) recorded 70 tackles on the season and led the team with 14 pass break-ups on the season, which ranked him second in the WAC. Green also grabbed two interceptions on the year, along with one forced fumble. Green tallied his first career interception of his career against Louisiana Tech and then grabbed his second in his final game as an Aggie against Utah State.
The Aggies finished the 2011 season at 4-9 overall and 2-5 in the WAC. NM State defeated its first BCS school and Big 10 school in school history in Minnesota this season, as well as in-state rival New Mexico for the third straight season.