Northwest Missouri State sophomore wide receiver Jake Soy, who led the nation with 1,559 yards receiving and 27 touchdowns, was named Receiver of the Year by Don Hansen’s Football Gazette, which released its 2009 All-America team Monday.
Soy is one of five Bearcats on the list, which includes junior offensive lineman Brett Grozinger, senior safety Myles Burnsides, senior running back LaRon Council and senior defensive lineman Tyler Roach. Soy and Grozinger were first-team honorees, Burnsides was a second-team choice and Council and Roach were third-team selections.
Council and Burnsides are repeat selections from a year ago. Burnsides is a 2009 unanimous All-American, having been picked by all five publications. Four publications picked Soy and Grozinger, though the AFCA, by its own rules, could only pick one Northwest player.
For the second time in as many seasons, head coach Mel Tjeerdsma was named Don Hansen’s Division II Coach of the Year. Tjeerdsma led the Bearcats to 14 straight wins following a season-opening loss to Abilene Christian and captured the program’s third national title in 12 seasons.
Soy’s 27 touchdowns receptions this past season are the third-most in Division II history. He finished with 92 receptions and had nine 100-yard receiving efforts. He hauled in a school-record four touchdowns in two games and caught three touchdown passes in four others.
Council ran for 1,782 yards and scored 22 touchdowns while averaging six yards per carry. He also caught 42 passes for 349 yards and a score. Burnsides finished second on the team with 82 tackles and tied for the team lead with five interceptions. Roach added 48 stops including 4.5 sacks and 8.5 tackles-for-loss. Grozinger, a finalist for the Gene Upshaw Award, helped lead an offense that averaged 42 points and 475 yards per game.
Junior quarterback Blake Bolles and sophomore linebacker Chad Kilgore were named honorable mention. Bolles passed for 4,145 yards and 42 touchdowns. Kilgore led Northwest with 96 tackles.
2009 All-American list.