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Bobcat Football Players Earn Academic Honors

Bobcat Football Players Earn Academic Honors

Nov. 9, 2006

ATHENS, Ohio - Three members of the Ohio football team have been recognized for their work both on the field and in the classroom. Sophomore defensive end Jameson Hartke (Centerville, Ohio), senior offensive lineman J.J. Knabb (McMurray, Pa.) and senior nose tackle Shane Yates (Martinez, Ga.) have all been named to the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA)/ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District IV Second Team.

In order to be considered for the Academic All-District teams, student-athletes must be a starter or important reserve and have a cumulative grade-point average of 3.2 or higher. The teams are voted on by CoSIDA members in each district.

Hartke, a finance major, has recorded 31 tackles on the season, second-most among Ohio defensive linemen. He leads the team with 4.5 sacks and ranks third on the team with 6.5 tackles for loss. Hartke tied a career high with 2.0 sacks in the Bobcats' win at Kent State on Oct. 28. In his two seasons at Ohio, Hartke has recorded a team-high 8.5 sacks.

Knabb has started all 10 games for the Bobcats at center in 2006. He boasts the second-best grade of any linemen on the team with an 85-percent rating and leads the team in "decleater" blocks. A physical education major, Knabb notched the highest single-game grade of any Ohio linemen with a 95-percent rating at Kent State (55 positive plays in 58 snaps). He has been an integral part of the offensive line that has blocked for junior running back Kalvin McRae, who became the first Ohio player ever to rush for more than 100 yards in five straight games and currently ranks sixth all-time at Ohio in rushing yards.

Yates has registered 18 tackles, 3.0 tackles for loss and a sack from his nose tackle position, starting the first 10 games this season. Yates, who was granted a sixth year of eligibility by the NCAA, has already earned bachelor's degrees in management & strategic leadership and management information systems. He is currently enrolled on the Ohio sports administration graduate program.

It is the first Academic All-District selections for each of the three Bobcats. Hartke, Knabb and Yates are the first Ohio football players to earn the honor since Dennis Thompson was a first-team selection in 2004.

The Bobcats (7-3, 5-1 MAC) have won five straight games and are just one win away from clinching their first-ever MAC East Division championship and first MAC title of any kind since 1968. Ohio will attempt to win the division championship on Thursday, Nov. 16 when it hosts Akron at 7:30 p.m. The game will mark the final home appearance for 19 seniors, including Knabb and Yates. For ticket information, call the Ohio Athletics Ticket Office at 1-800-575-CATS.

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