Four Monarchs Named Phil Steele All-American's

December 28, 2012
By ODU Athletics
ODU Sports

Dec. 28, 2012

NORFOLK, Va. - Old Dominion sophomore quarterback Taylor Heinicke headlined four Monarchs on the 2012 Phil Steele FCS All-America Team. Heinicke earned first-team honors and was joined on the first-team by punter Jonathan Plisco while linebacker Craig Wilkins earned third-team honors and wide receiver Nick Mayers was named to the fourth team.

Heinicke adds yet another honor to his 2012 season, as he was honored as the Walter Payton Award Winner for the Best Player in the FCS and won the Dudley Award as the top Division I Player in the state of Virginia. This is Heinicke's fifth All-America honor so far this postseason.

The sophomore quarterback became the first QB in FCS history to pass for 5,000 yards, throwing for an FCS single-season record of 5,076 yards, surpassing Alcorn State's Steve McNair's record he set in 1994. Heinicke also set an FCS record with 398 completions, passing Villanova's Brett Gordon's record of 385 he set in 2002.

Heinicke's 44 TD passes and 55 total scores are third most in a single-season and his 5,546 yards of total offense are second only to the 5,799 yards McNair had for Alcorn State in 1994.

Plisco finished fifth in the FCS averaging 45.0 yards per punt. He knocked eight punts inside the 20 and also had eight punts of 50 yards or longer, including a season long 61 yarder in the win over No. 18 New Hampshire.

Wilkins led ODU with 90 tackles, 6.5 sacks and tied for the team-lead with 13.5 tackles for loss. His 6.5 sacks tied for the most in a single-season in school history. He also recorded a team-best three interceptions. He graduates as ODU's all-time leader in tackles with 340, tackles for lost with 40, sacks with 13.5 and is tied for the career lead with nine interceptions.

Mayers put together the best season by a wide receiver in ODU's short history with 79 catches for 1,233 yards and tied for second in the country with 16 TD receptions. This is Mayers' third postseason All-American honor so far as well as earning first-team All-CAA. Like Wilkins, Mayers finished off his ODU career holding record for receptions with 190, receiving yards with 2,688 and TD catches with 30.