Every season it’s important for us to make predictions because … well, that’s what we do as sports writers. We just hope to inspire conversation – whether these predictions come true or not is entirely moot.
I have here, the HERO Sports 2015 D3 Football Preseason All-America Offense. The preseason All-America D3 football defense and special teams are listed here.
Our partners at BennettRank are all about data and use stats to rank teams, so we decided to take a statistical approach to our list of Preseason All-Americans. Numbers never lie, after all. So let’s get into it:
Joe Callahan – BR-6 Wesley
Callahan finished last season among the elite QBs of DIII football. The man completed 300-of-463 passes, for 4,190 yards — No. 2 in the nation, behind only DIII legend Kevin Burke, who amassed 4,412 — 46 touchdowns and just 10 interceptions. Clearly, Callahan is set to do wonderful things his senior year.
Sam Sura – BR-8 St. John’s
This one is tricky to call, especially with so many potential candidates set to break out in the position, but Sura just seems primed to have a banner year. After finishing as the No. 2 rusher last year, amassing 1,769 yards and scoring 19 TDs, the St. John star separated his right shoulder in the second round of the NCAA Playoffs on his second carry of the game — a play that ended his season rather abruptly. Sura’s team went on to lose the game 21-10, showing just how valuable the young RB is to his team.
Marquis Barrolle — BR-24 Texas Lutheran
I’m excited to see what Barrolle brings to the field this season. As a sophomore last season, the 5-foot-4, 150-pound running back from Texas attained the most yards of any running back — 1,792 — and crossed the goal line 14 times. He also finished No. 2 in rushing yards per game. Max Irving profiled Barrolle earlier this week.
Dushawn Brown — BR-116 Denison
Brown enters his senior season with a very high ceiling. As a junior, he turned 83 receptions into 1,400 yards and 13 touchdowns, ranked No. 2 in yards per game (139.7) and No. 10 in receptions per game (8.3). Brown might just be the best thing coming out of Denison this year.
Roman Namdar — BR-2 Mount Union
This is another tough spot to predict, since superstar Mount Union quarterback Kevin Burke is no longer in tow. Namdar is an excellent receiver, one who caught 70 receptions — 13 fewer than Brown — and managed to finish No. 6 in yards (1,287) and No. 2 in TDs. Can he perform in similar fashion with a new QB? If so, he’s a sure bet to make this list at season’s end.
Devin Summiel — BR-151 Fitchburg St.
No other tight end came close to Summiel’s production last season. The 6-foot-2, 208-pound monster pulled down 60 receptions for 1,118 yards and eight touchdowns, which ranked him twentieth overall in terms of receiving yards.
Michael Frank — BR-2 Mount Union
The 6-foot-2, 270 pound offensive lineman started all 14 games for the Raiders.
Zack Crossey — BR-126 Washington & Jefferson
At 6-0 and 280 pounds, Crossey helped the Presidents No. 7 ranked offense amass over 500 yards per game.
Colin Egan — BR-11 Johns Hopkins
Egan, a 6-foot-4, 300-pound senior, helped the Blue Jays secure an 11-1 overall record and a sixth consecutive Centennial Conference title.
Conner Peters — BR-1 UW-Whitewater
Peters, a 6-0, 297-pound junior, started all 15 games for the Warhawks — the top scoring, passing, and rushing offense in the nation.
Alex Damschroder — BR-37 Heidelberg
Damschroder anchored the No. 16 rushing offense in the division with 2,575 total yards and 257.5 yards per game; and No. 4 overall offense, with 5,325 total yards accrued. His o-line allowed 1.6 sacks per game.
Dean DeVries — BR-123 Hope
DeVries averaged 42.7 yards per game as a junior off 38 punts and looks to add to that total in 2015.
Tim Willett — BR-52 Louisiana College
Willett accrued 2,542 yards on 61 kicks, a little under 200 yards from last year’s All-American kicker Nate Ray.
Matt Pawlowski – BR-29 Guilford
Pawlowski finished No. 3 in passing efficiency in 2014, 179.2, right behind leaders Dylan Warden and Kevin Burle (180.1). Yet, Warden only attempted 167 passes compared to Pawlowski’s 369. The 6-foot-2 senior also finished No. 5 in touchdowns (38) and passing yards, 3,670.
Ryan Ruffing — Washington & Jefferson
Once again, any one of these running backs could finish on the first or second team. Ruffing heads into his final season with the Presidents, having accrued over 1,600 rushing yards and 25 touchdowns.
Lamont Williams — BR-99 Carroll
Likewise, Williams could have a banner final year after collecting 1,261 yards on the ground and a whopping 21 touchdowns — third best in the nation.
Joey Sonnenfeld — BR-71 Augsburg
The 6-foot-3 senior Auggie scored a season-high 16 points at St. John’s in January, which helped him achieve 1,219 yards and 14 TDs on 70 receptions. The could be his floor this year, which is pretty scary.
Matt Boyce — BR-38 Gustavus Adolphus
Boyce became Gustavus’s first wide receiver to earn All-American honors this past season thanks to 77 receptions, 1,170 yards and 17 TDs. Can he do it again?
Joe Sommers — BR-5 Wisconsin-Oshkosh
The 6-foot-3 senior Titan caught a team-leading 41 passes for 669 receiving yards and three touchdowns, according to Wisconsin’s website. He earned All-American Second Team honors for his efforts.
Fahraad Johnson — BR-43 Morrisville State
Johnson, a 6-foot-3 offensive lineman, helped anchor a club that finished with over 5,000 yards of offense.
Matt Snebold — BR-9 Wheaton
Snebold, a 6-foot-4, 285-pound juggernaut, helped his offense accrue more than 400 yards of offense per game.
Anthony Latina — BR-12 John Carroll
Latina was a huge factor in JCU’s success last season on offense, helping his team amass a whopping 6,268 yards and 86 touchdowns.
Elliot Tobin — BR-111 MIT
Tobin started all 10 games he played at guard, and, according to MIT’s athletic site, played a huge part in helping his QB and RB collect over 3,500 yards of offense.
Nick Stanfield — BR-70 Framingham State
Stanfield’s o-line allowed just eight sacks last year, and helped the offense accrue over 423 yards per game.
Alec Stanke — BR-159 Washington-St. Louis
Stanke averaged 42.3 yards per game, kicking 44 punts for 1,859 yards.
Vinny Tavernelli — BR-131 WPI
Tavernilli, a 5-foot-10 senior, accumulated 2,638 yards on kickoffs last season.