Thirteen Hokies named all-state by VaSID
Six earn first-team honors
December 19, 2007

HARRISONBURG, Va. - The top season in team history earned the University of Richmond football program three of the top awards presented annually by the Virginia Sports Information Directors Association.

Spiders senior running back Tim Hightower has been named the association's state Division I offensive player of the year, Richmond redshirt freshman wide receiver Kevin Grayson state Division I rookie of the year, and Spider coach Dave Clawson the Virginia Division I coach of the year.

Also recognized Wednesday in VaSID voting was University of Virginia senior defensive end Chris Long as state Division I defensive player of the year.

Sports information directors from throughout Virginia took part in the VaSID voting that in addition to the top individual awards named all-state first and second teams on offense and defense.

Clawson led Richmond to an 11-3 record, to a share of the Colonial Athletic Association title and to the semifinals of the NCAA Football Championship Subdivision playoffs. The 11-win season was the first in program history, and the Spiders set team season records for scoring, total offense and rushing offense. Clawson also was state coach of the year in 2005 when he led Richmond to the NCAA playoffs.

Hightower ran for Richmond season records of 1,924 yards and 20 touchdowns and twice was national offensive player of the week. He caught 32 passes for 228 yards and three scores and was first-team All-CAA, runner-up for the state's Dudley Award, a first-team Walter Camp All-America and a second-team Associated Press All-America.

Long was a consensus All-America, the Ted Hendricks Award winner as the nation's top defensive end, the Atlantic Coast Conference defensive player of the year, and the Dudley Award winner as the state's top player. He had 75 tackles in 12 regular-season games, including 19 for loss and 14 quarterback sacks. He was the ACC's only unanimous first-team all-league performer, and he is third nationally in sacks.

Grayson, the rookie of the year in the CAA, caught 68 passes for 970 yards and seven scores. He had four 100-yard receiving games, including a 122-yard, two-touchdown effort at Appalachian State in NCAA play, and he was second-team All-CAA. Grayson set a Spider freshman mark for receiving yards and had the program's No. 3 all-time receiving yards total despite missing two games because of injuries.

Virginia Tech, which earned an Orange bowl invitation by winning the ACC title, led the overall all-state voting with 13 honorees, including six to the first team. Liberty had eight selections, Virginia seven, James Madison six, Richmond five, Hampton four, Norfolk State three, William & Mary three, and Virginia Military Institute one.

Seven players were repeat selections to the all-state first team, including James Madison safety Tony LeZotte, who was a fourth-time choice. Repeat honorees on offense include Virginia tight end Tom Santi and guard Branden Albert and Virginia Tech tackle Duane Brown. Joining LeZotte as repeat choices on defense were Long, Hampton lineman Kendall Langford, and Virginia Tech back Brandon Flowers.

VaSID 2007 DIVISION I ALL-STATE FOOTBALL TEAMS

First-Team Offense
PositionNameSchoolYear
QuarterbackRodney LandersJames MadisonJunior
Running BackTim HightowerRichmondSenior
Running BackRashad JenningsLibertyJunior
Wide ReceiverJeremy GilchristHamptonJunior
Wide ReceiverKevin GraysonRichmondr-Freshman
Tight EndTom SantiVirginiaSenior
CenterScott LemnJames MadisonJunior
GuardBranden AlbertVirginiaJunior
GuardStephen SeneLibertySenior
TackleMarshall AusberryLibertySenior
TackleDuane BrownVirginia TechSenior

Second-Team Offense
PositionNameSchoolYear
QuarterbackSean GlennonVirginia TechJunior
Running BackDaryl JonesNorfolk StateSenior
Running BackBranden OreVirginia TechJunior
Wide ReceiverElliott MackWilliam & MaryJunior
Wide ReceiverJosh MorganVirginia TechSenior
Tight EndDrew AtchisonWilliam & MarySenior
CenterJordy LipseyVirginiaSenior
GuardEddie PinigisLibertySenior
GuardSergio RenderVirginia TechSenior
TackleTerrence AptedJames MadisonJunior
TackleEugene MonroeVirginiaJunior

First-Team Defense
PositionNameSchoolYear
LineChris EllisVirginia TechSenior
LineKendall LangfordHamptonSenior
LineChris LongVirginiaSenior
LineLawrence SidburyRichmondJunior
LinebackerXavier AdibiVirginia TechSenior
LinebackerMarquez DavisNorfolk StateSenior
LinebackerEric McBrideRichmondr-Freshman
BackBrandon FlowersVirginia TechJunior
BackVictor "Macho" HarrisVirginia TechJunior
BackTony LeZotteJames MadisonSenior
BackTerrell WhiteheadNorfolk StateSophomore

Second-Team Defense
PositionNameSchoolYear
LineJohn BaranowskyJames MadisonSenior
LineBarry BookerVirginia TechSenior
LineJeffrey FitzgeraldVirginiaSophomore
LineTommy LloydVirginia Military InstituteSenior
LinebackerVince HallVirginia TechSenior
LinebackerStevie Ray LloydLibertySenior
LinebackerVince ReddLibertySenior
BackPatrick CalvaryLibertyJunior
BackDerek CoxWilliam & MaryJunior
BackMarcus HaywoodJames MadisonJunior
BackStephen HowellRichmondSenior

First-Team Specialists
PositionNameSchoolYear
PlacekickerJud DunlevyVirginia TechSenior
PunterRyan WeigandVirginiaSenior
Return SpecialistJeremy GilchristHamptonJunior

Second-Team Specialists
PositionNameSchoolYear
PlacekickerNoah GreenbaumLibertySenior
PunterJahmal BlanchardHamptonSophomore
Return SpecialistEddie RoyalVirginia TechSenior

Offensive Player Of The Year: Tim Hightower, Senior, Running Back (Richmond)
Defensive Player Of The Year: Chris Long, Senior, End (Virginia)
Coach Of The Year: Dave Clawson (Richmond)
Rookie Of The Year: Kevin Grayson, r-Freshman, Wide Receiver (Richmond)