Six ODU Football Players Named to Don Hansen All-Region Team
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. — Seniors Jake Brandt (Bexley, Ohio) and Justin Bell (Columbus, Ohio) headlined a total of six Ohio Dominican football players who were named to the 2013 Don Hansen NCAA Division II All-Super Region Four squad on Friday.
Both Brandt and Bell were first team selections, while senior Mark Nichols (Pataskala, Ohio) and sophomores Di'Andre Harrison (Columbus, Ohio) and Brent Wahle (Pataskala, Ohio) were second team honorees. Sophomore Warren Shields (Richwood, Ohio) was a third team pick as well.
Bell, a defensive back, was named to four separate All-American teams following the conclusion of the season and was also named OhioCollegeFootball.com's Co-Defensive Player of the Year. Bell was also named the GLIAC Defensive Back of the Year and is a two-time First Team All-GLIAC selection. He was also selected to the Daktronics Super Region Four First Team.
He capped his career with a school-record 294 career tackles and a school-record seven fumbles forced. He tied a school-record with nine career interceptions and is tied for second with six fumble recoveries. Bell's career 14.2 punt return average is also a school-record.
Brandt was named to the Second Team All-American squad by Daktronics in December. He started 43 consecutive games at right tackle during his career, helping the Panthers re-write the school's offensive record books. A First Team All-GLIAC pick, Brandt blocked for the first three 1,000 yard rushers in school history in Mike Noffsinger, Nichols and Brandon Schoen and was part of an offensive line that allowed just 10 sacks over the past two seasons. ODU ranked second in the nation in sacks allowed with five this year.
Nichols, a First Team All-GLIAC pick, led the team with 1,155 rushing yards this season, including 11 touchdowns, and averaged nearly six yards per carry. He had six 100-yard games, including a monster 275-yard, three-TD performance in the win over Findlay on CBS Sports Network. Nichols also ran for three touchdowns in the win against Malone and was a huge threat in the return game, bringing back a kick 95 yards for a score at Ashland. He exits his career as the second leading rusher in school history.
Harrison missed two games but still totaled 41 tackles and a school single-season record eight sacks this year. He also tallied 12.0 tackles for loss, forced three fumbles, and blocked a punt for a safety against Hillsdale which helped him pick up conference player of the week honors as well. Harrison was also a First Team All-GLIAC selection and second team all-region.
Wahle, an AP All-American, authored the best season of any GLIAC kicker in history, setting a conference record by booting 19 field goals in GLIAC play while hitting 21 total field goals. He drilled five kicks of 45 yards or longer and also set a school-record with a 51-yard field goal. He's made 31 field goals in his career, which is already a school-record, and he also holds the school-record for most points scored with 195.
Shields was a BSN All-American and First Team All-GLIAC pick. Shields finished second on the Panthers with 99 tackles, including 57 solo stops. He also recorded 11.0 tackles for loss and five sacks while breaking up three passes. Shields had 10 or more tackles in five games and had 2.5 tackles for loss in the wins against Hillsdale and Findlay.
The Panthers won the GLIAC regular season title and advanced to the NCAA postseason for the first time in school history.