As a member of the Football Writers Association of America, I’m proud to be a voter on the FWAA All-America Team. The release is below.
DALLAS (FWAA) – The Football Writers Association of America’s 70th All-America Team is dominated by the Southeastern and Atlantic Coast conferences, which placed half of the 26 players on the first team, deemed the best in college football. Fittingly, those two conferences have the teams – Florida State and Auburn – in the VIZIO BCS National Championship Game Jan. 6, 2014, in Pasadena, Calif.
For the second straight season, the official announcement of the FWAA All-America Team, the second-longest continuously-published team in major college football, came exclusively on SiriusXM Radio’s “College Football Nation.”
Top-ranked Florida State led the ACC with three players on the team, most notably freshman quarterback Jameis Winston, the 2013 Heisman Trophy winner. For the first time since 1949, the FWAA has selected a second team and, while SEC champion Auburn didn’t place a player on the first team, it did have two second-teamers. And, Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn was named the Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year this past Monday in recognition of the Tigers’ brilliant turnaround season.
Alabama of the SEC also placed three players on the first team, while Stanford of the Pac-12 and the SEC’s Texas A&M had two each. The first-team conference breakdown went like this: SEC (7), ACC (6), Big 12 (4), Pac-12 (4), American Athletic (2) Big Ten (2), and Mid-American (1). Of the 10 Football Bowl Subdivision conferences, seven are represented on the first team.
For the second straight season, the FWAA had a freshman as its first-team quarterback following Texas A&M’s Johnny Manziel last season. There was only one first-team repeater from 2012, Texas A&M offensive tackle Jake Matthews. Included on the 2013 team is the Outland Trophy and Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner Aaron Donald. The Pittsburgh defensive tackle is only the fourth player to sweep both of the FWAA’s two major player awards.
2013 FWAA ALL-AMERICA FIRST TEAM
QB Jameis Winston, Florida State (6-4, 228, Fr., Bessemer, Ala.)
RB Ka’Deem Carey, Arizona (5-10, 207, Jr., Tucson, Ariz.)
RB Andre Williams, Boston College (6-0, 227, Sr., Schnecksville, Pa.)
WR Brandin Cooks, Oregon State (5-10, 186, Jr., Stockton, Calif.)
WR Mike Evans, Texas A&M (6-5, 225, So., Galveston, Texas)
TE Jace Amaro, Texas Tech (6-5, 260, Jr., San Antonio, Texas)
OL Cyrus Kouandjio, Alabama (6-6, 310, Jr., Hyattsville, Md.)
OL Jake Matthews, Texas A&M (6-5, 305, Sr., Missouri City, Texas)
OL Cyril Richardson, Baylor (6-5, 340, Sr., Fort Worth, Texas)
OL David Yankey, Stanford (6-5, 313, Sr., Roswell, Ga.)
C Bryan Stork, Florida State (6-4, 300, Sr., Vero Beach, Fla.)
DL Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh (6-0, 285, Sr., Pittsburgh, Pa.)
DL Trent Murphy, Stanford (6-6, 261, Sr., Mesa, Ariz.)
DL Michael Sam, Missouri (6-2, 255, Sr., Hitchcock, Texas)
DL Marcus Smith, Louisville (6-3, 252, Sr., Columbus, Ga,)
LB Chris Borland, Wisconsin (5-11, 246, Sr., Kettering, Ohio)
LB Khalil Mack, Buffalo (6-3, 248, Sr., Fort Pierce, Fla.)
LB C.J. Mosley, Alabama (6-2, 238, Sr., Mobile, Ala.)
DB Ha Ha Clinton-Dix, Alabama (6-1, 208, Jr., Orlando, Fla.)
DB Darqueze Dennard, Michigan State (5-11, 197, Sr., Dry Branch, Ga.)
DB Justin Gilbert, Oklahoma State (6-0, 200, Sr., Huntsville, Texas)
DB Lamarcus Joyner, Florida State (5-8, 190, Sr., Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)
K Anthony Fera, Texas (6-2, 208, Sr., Cypress, Texas)
P Tom Hornsey, Memphis (6-3, 210, Sr., Geelong, Australia)
KR Odell Beckham Jr., LSU (6-0, 193, Jr., New Orleans, La.)
PR Ryan Switzer, North Carolina (5-10, 175, Fr., Charleston, W. Va.)
2013 FWAA ALL-AMERICA SECOND TEAM
Offense: QB AJ McCarron, Alabama; RB Tre Mason, Auburn; RB Bishop Sankey, Washington; WR Tyler Lockett, Kansas State; WR Allen Robinson, Penn State; TE Eric Ebron, North Carolina; OL Gabe Jackson, Mississippi State; OL Jack Mewhort, Ohio State; OL Greg Robinson, Auburn; OL Brandon Scherff, Iowa; C Hroniss Grasu, Oregon. Defense: DL Vic Beasley, Clemson; DL Jackson Jeffcoat, Texas; DL Timmy Jernigan, Florida State; DL Ryan Mueller, Kansas State; LB Anthony Barr, UCLA; LB Ryan Shazier, Ohio State; LB Shayne Skov, Stanford; DB Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, Oregon; DB E.J. Gaines, Missouri; DB Ed Reynolds, Stanford; DB Jason Verrett, TCU. Specialists: K Nate Freese, Boston College; P Richie Leone, Houston; KR Ty Montgomery, Stanford; PR Jamison Crowder, Duke.
The FWAA All-America Team was first selected in 1944, three years after the organization was formed. The FWAA’s inaugural team included Army’s Heisman Trophy tandem of Doc Blanchard and Glenn Davis and Georgia Tech’s Frank Broyles, who later became Arkansas’ head football coach and athletic director.
Over the years, the FWAA team has highlighted all the game’s great players in several media forums. From 1946-70, LOOK magazine published the FWAA team and brought players and selected writers to New York City for a celebration. During that 25-year period, the FWAA team was introduced on national television shows by such noted hosts as Bob Hope, Steve Allen, and Perry Como.
After LOOK folded, the FWAA started a long association with NCAA Films (later known as NCAA Productions), which produced a 30-minute television program. The team was part of ABC-TV’s 1981 College Football Series. From 1983-90, the team was introduced on either ABC or ESPN. In 2002 and ’03, the All-America team was honored with a banquet at the Citrus Bowl.
The same bowl, now the Capital One, also was a sponsor when the team was featured on ABC and ESPN from different locations on Disney properties from 2004-07. From 2008-10, the team had been the subject of a one-hour ESPN special.
For nearly seven decades the FWAA has selected an All-America team with the help of its members and an All-America Committee, which represents all the regions in the country. From that All-America team, the FWAA also selects the Outland Trophy winner (best interior lineman) and also the Bronko Nagurski Trophy winner (best defensive player).
Some of the true greats of the writing profession have helped to select this team over the years: Grantland Rice, Bert McGrane, Blackie Sherrod, Furman Bisher, Pat Harmon, Fred Russell, Edwin Pope, Murray Olderman, Paul Zimmerman – and the list goes on and on. The FWAA All-America team is steeped in tradition and history and is selected by a writers’ group with those same attributes.
The Football Writers Association of America, a non-profit organization founded in 1941, consists of more than 1,200 men and women who cover college football. The membership includes journalists, broadcasters and publicists, as well as key executives in all the areas that involve the game. The FWAA works to govern areas that include gameday operations, major awards and its annual All-America team.