Dec. 6, 2006
CLEVELAND, Ohio - Four members of the Ohio football team were named to the 2006 Academic All-MAC squad announced by the league on Wednesday. Senior quarterback Austen Everson (Brentwood, Tenn.), sophomore defensive end Jameson Hartke (Centerville, Ohio), senior center J.J. Knabb (McMurray, Pa.) and senior linebacker Tyler Russ (Stetsonville, Wis.) were all honored for their work in the classroom.
In order to be considered for the Academic All-MAC team, student-athletes must have a cumulative grade-point average of 3.2 or higher. The team is selected by the faculty athletic representatives from each MAC institution.
Everson was part of the Academic All-MAC team for the second time in as many years. The senior co-captain holds a 3.62 grade point average in management & strategic leadership. In his final season under center, Everson posted single-season career bests in completions (123), completion percentage (56.2), passing yards (1,181), touchdown passes (6) and rushing yards (373). Everson ranks sixth all-time at Ohio with 3,411 passing yards, fifth all-time with 291 completions and eighth all-time in total offense with 4,213 yards.
Hartke, a finance major with a 3.55 grade point average, also earned second-team Academic All-District IV honors from the College Sports Information Directors of American. A second-team All-MAC pick, Hartke leads all Ohio defensive linemen with 42 tackles and is the Bobcats' leader with 7.5 sacks, the fifth-best single-season total in school history. In two seasons, Hartke has amassed 11.5 sacks, putting him seventh on the Bobcats' all-time list. Hartke was named Ohio's Most Valuable Player in the MAC Championship Game after recording 4.0 tackles for loss, including 2.0 sacks. The 30 yards lost on his stops behind the line of scrimmage were a MAC title game record.
Knabb is a physical education major with a 3.37 grade point average. He was also a second-team Academic All-District IV selection this season. Knabb has started all 13 games for the Bobcats at center in 2006. He 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 in 30 years to rush for more than 1,000 yards in consecutive seasons.
Russ, an integrated math and business administration major with a 3.28 grade point average, was a second-team All-MAC selection in 2006. He leads the Bobcats with 84 total tackles and is tied for the team lead with three interceptions. Russ has also totaled 4.5 tackles for loss, two pass break-ups, a fumble recovery and a forced fumble. He recorded at least 10 tackles in three games this season. A co-captain, Russ is second among active Ohio players with 254 career tackles.
Ohio was one of seven schools with at least one player on the Academic All-MAC squad. The Bobcats' four selections were the second most in the league.
The Bobcats are 9-4 heading into their first bowl appearance since 1968. Ohio will face Southern Miss in the 2007 GMAC Bowl to be held on Jan. 7 at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, Ala. For ticket and travel information, call the Ohio Athletics Ticket Office at 1-800-575-CATS or visit www.ohiobobcats.com.