Ten members of the Truman State Football team were named all-MIAA on Tuesday by league coaches.
Senior Richie Schumacher was a first-team defensive back selection while junior wide receiver Dallas Grier, senior defensive end Patrick Blackwell and senior punter Eric Phillips were second team choices. Joining those four on the honorable mention list were four seniors, center Blake Holland and defensive backs Michael Elliott, Tremaine Millender and Robert Gayden and two juniors, defensive lineman Jeramey Dockery and kicker Derek Koon. The 10 all-conference honorees are the most by the Bulldogs since 12 were named to the list following the 2006 season.
The conference did not expand the all-conference list, keeping just a first, second and honorable mention team despite growing by four schools in 2012. Schumacher earned his second all-conference mention after being named to the second team last season.
He was fourth in the conference in total tackles with 110 and led the league with three fumble recoveries.
Schumacher also had six tackles for loss, two interceptions and blocked two kicks during his senior season.
He wrapped up his Bulldog career tied for third all-time in tackles with 354 stops in 44 games played.
Schumacher is the Bulldogsâ?? first, first-team selection since Michael Elliott garnered the honor following the 2010 season. Schumacher had five games during 2012 with over 10 tackles per game with a season-high of 20 stops against Pittsburg State. The 20 tackles were the most by a Bulldog in a single-game in 11 years. Grier is now a three-time all-MIAA receiver after two years of being an honorable mention choice.
He led the conference in receptions per game at 7.4, was fifth in receiving yards per game at 93.3, third in yards per punt return at 11.4 and was 10th in all-purpose yards per game at 115.3.
Grier became just the second receiver in Truman history to have over 1,000 yards (1,026) receiving and will enter his senior season fourth in career catches with 161 and third in yards with 2,173. He had 81 catches this season with four touchdown receptions. Grier had four games of over 10 receptions in 2012 with a season and career high of 178 yards on 11 catches in a victory over Nebraska-Kearney. Blackwell wraps up his Bulldog career as a three-time All-MIAA defensive end. He was second in the league in sacks with eight this season and finished sixth all-time in Truman history with 21.5 sacks. He was second among conference leaders in tackles for loss with 16 and forced two fumbles. Blackwell was third on the team in tackles with 65. He was an honorable mention selection his sophomore and junior season and played in all 44 games during his Bulldog career. Blackwell had a season-high 10 tackles and three for loss plus a fumble recovering in the Bulldogs loss at Missouri Southern. Phillips returns as a second-team all-MIAA selection as one of the top punters in Truman history.
Phillips was fifth in the league in punting average at 40.4 per punt and led the league with 32 punts inside the opponents 20 yard line.
For his career, Phillips averaged 39.4 yards per punt on 247 boots and had a long punt of 75 yards.
He pinned 77 of his career punts inside the opponentâ??s 20. Phillips best game in 2012 was a 48.0/punt performance on five punts in a Truman win against Northwestern Oklahoma State and registered his longest punt of 58 yards in the season opener against Southwest Baptist.
He had three punts downed inside the one yard line. Dockery was tied for third on the team in tackles this season with 65 and added seven for loss with three sacks.
He was 41st in the conference in total tackles per game at 5.8 and had his best game against Nebraska-Kearney making nine stops with two for loss. Elliott was second on the team in tackles with 89 and was tied for the team lead in interceptions with five.
He was ninth in the conference in tackles per game at 8.8 and fourth in passes defended.
Elliott was named the MIAA Defensive Player of the Week following three, fourth quarter interceptions to preserve the Bulldogs season opening win at Southwest Baptist (Mo.) University.
He had four games over 10 tackles this season with three straight to end the year.
His season high was 14 stops with a fumble recovery in the finale against Lindenwood (Mo.).
He was a first-team all-conference selection in 2010 and finishes his Bulldog career sixth in interceptions with 11 and 294 career tackles in 42 games played. Gayden earns his first conference mention in his final season with the Bulldogs.
He registered 44 tackles in all 11 games played and was tied for the team lead in interceptions with five.
He had 138 yards on interception returns with a long of 80 coming against Nebraska-Kearney in a victory.
Gayden had two interceptions in Trumanâ??s season finale against Lindenwood (Mo.). Holland (Oak Point, Texas, Denton Ryan HS) was named to the honorable mention team for the second straight year as the anchor of the Bulldog offensive line.
He played in 35 games during his Bulldog career starting 21 in the last two years. Koon earned his second honorable mention selection as the Bulldogs placekicker. He made his final seven field goal attempts to finish 11-of-18 on the season including a career long of 46 yards against Pittsburg (Kan.) State. He was 30-of-31 on extra point attempts and finished with 63 points. Koon will enter his senior season tied for the Truman career record held by Mickey Masucci with 37. Koon averaged 56.9 yards per kickoff in 2012. Millender returns to the all-conference team after missing the majority of last season with an injury.
He finished with 56 total tackles and a sack in 10 games played.
He had three games in which he had over 10 tackles with a 12 stop performance against Emporia (Kan.) St. being his career-high.
Millender was an honorable mention selection in 2010. The 2012 Bulldogs finished 4-7 overall and 3-7 in the MIAA.
Courtesy Truman State University