Ronnie Cameron Named The Roanoke Times Defensive Player of the Year

December 28, 2011
By ODU Athletics
ODU Sports

Dec. 28, 2011

NORFOLK, Va. - Senior defensive tackle Ronnie Cameron (Westbury, N.Y.) was named The Roanoke Times Defensive Player of the Year as five Monarchs were named to Division I All-State College Football Team it was announced this week.

Cameron along with punter Jonathan Plisco (Newport News, Va.) and kicker Jarod Brown (Yorktown, Va.) were among the First Team selections while linebacker Craig Wilkins and cornerback Eriq Lewis (Washington, D.C.) were among the Second Team All-State honorees.

Cameron, the 2011 Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) Defensive Player of the Year, has earned four All-America honors for his performance in 2011 having been named a First Team All-American by the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) and The Sports Network and a Second Team All-American by the Associated Press and Phil Steele. Cameron was also honored with the 2011 Elite Defensive Tackle Award by the College Football Performance Awards (CFPA) as he was second on the Monarch squad with 73 tackles (28 solo, 45 assisted) along with a team-leading 17 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks. He averaged 5.6 tackles per game, which was fourth among defensive lineman in the CAA and finished second in the league in tackles for loss averaging 1.31 per contest. Cameron captured a career-high 11 tackles along with a season-high 3.5 tackles for loss and 2.5 sacks against CAA Champion Towson and also made 10 stops with three for loss against James Madison in ODU's first top-10 victory. His performance on the defensive line helped the Monarchs rank second in the league at the close of the regular season in rushing defense allowing 122.55 yards per contest.

Plisco, who has earned seven All-America honors in this three-year career at Old Dominion, also earned four national distinctions in 2011 - Second Team All-American status by College Sports Madness, The Sports Network, the Associated Press, and Phil Steele. A First Team All-CAA selection, Plisco led the CAA and ranks second in the nation in punting averaging 46.2 yards per punt. Of his 51 punts on the year, 20 went the distance of 50 yards or more and 12 were placed inside the opponent 20.

Brown, a Third-Team All-CAA selection, led the Monarchs in scoring accounting for 101 of Old Dominion's 477 points on the season. He connected on 14 of his 21 field goals attempts, which included a career-high 51-yard field goal against future CAA opponent Georgia State. He also only missed two PAT's going 57-of-49 coming in third in the league at 96.6%. Brown averaged 7.6 points per contest topping the scoring list among all the league's placekickers.

Wilkins collected 111 tackles (58 solo, 38 assisted), including 14.5 tackles for loss to lead the Monarch defense in 2011. A First Team All-CAA award winner, Wilkins posted double figure stops in four games including a career-high 17 tackles against Hampton, Wilkins became the first Monarch to register over 100 tackles in a season. The redshirt junior also added 3.5 sacks, a pair of interceptions, three pass break-ups, five defended passes, a fumble recovery, and a forced fumble on the season. He also blocked a James Madison field goal as time expired to preserve ODU's 23-20 win over the Dukes and the Monarchs' first win over a top-10 program. Wilkins averaged 8.5 tackles per game, ranking him 12th in the league.

Lewis, a Second Team All-CAA honoree and a member of the inaugural Jerry Rice Watch List for the FCS' most outstanding freshman, led ODU with five interceptions and became the first Monarch with more than one interception in a game. The redshirt freshman had two picks at William & Mary in the regular season finale in the game's final minutes to seal the victory and resulted in the Monarch cornerback earning CAA Defensive Player of the Week honors. Lewis posted 41 tackles, a team-leading nine pass break-ups and 14 passes defended along with three forced fumbles. He ranks among the top-10 in interceptions among FCS defenders and was the top freshman in the CAA in the category. Lewis also ranked third in league in fumbles forced.

Since restarting its football team in 2009, Old Dominion has become the winningest start-up program in FCS history with a three-year total of 27 wins and only eight losses. In 2011, the Monarchs garnered their first national ranking, including cracking the top-10 after concluding the regular season at 9-2 overall and 6-2 in the Colonial Athletic Association, a league which sent five teams to the post-season. ODU made its first post-season appearance in 2011, advancing to the second round of the FCS playoffs.

Click here to view the entire All-State team selections.