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The Sanpete Messenger

Eighteen Snow football players nominated to All-American team

EPHRAIM—From the years 2014 to 2019, the Snow College Badger football team has seen 15 of their players earn the title of an All-American.

This year, they blew that number completely out of the water.

The National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) released their final roster of NJCAA All-America Teams last week via their website, and with it came a jaw-dropping 18 total recipients for Snow College football players; this is exceptionally high praise after the Badgers came only a few points short of winning the NJCAA National Championship this season, what would have been their first since 1985.

As it broke down, six players were named to the All-America First Team, seven were named to the Second Team, and five were given Honorable Mentions. Of note, all Badgers who were named All-Americans were true freshmen.

The total of 18 nominations completely shattered Snow’s record for nominations in a year, which previously stood at six, a mark attained in 2007. The second-most nominations this year was the nine that went to Hutchinson College.

“We are excited for these athletes,” Athletic Director Robert Nielson said. “I think this is an indication of the quality of our student-athletes and our coaches. Our coaches have done a great job of teaching and helping them improve their skills and techniques. Congratulations to the entire team and coaching staff.”

Coach Zac Erekson could not be reached for comment.

Snow had at least one All-American at every position in football, including on special teams.

On offense, the First Team nods went to wide receiver Tejhuan Palmer and offensive lineman Bob Schick.

Palmer led the nation in receiving touchdowns with 11 and averaged 87.1 receiving yards per game. He was also fifth in yards per catch with 21.8, and he notched 697 receiving yards over eight games. His biggest game came against Southern Shreveport in April, where he caught six passes for 160 yards and three touchdowns.

Schick led an offensive line that facilitated the best offense in the nation, scoring nearly 50 points per game and leading the nation in yards and passing touchdowns.

On defense, defensive lineman Shad Pulsipher, linebacker Owen Fa’amoe and defensive back Kieonte Scott each were named to the First Team.

Pulsipher was an absolute mauler in the trenches, collecting 3.5 sacks for 16 yards to go with six tackles for a loss. Pulsipher also broke up three passes.

Fa’amoe was equally a nightmare for opposing offenses as he notched four sacks for 17 yards. He was a terror to running backs, collecting 9.5 tackles for loss, walking other teams back a cumulative 46 yards. Fa’amoe also grabbed an interception.

Scott had three interceptions on the year, returned for a total of 54 yards but no touchdowns. He handled the secondary and also had 23 solo tackles.

Punter Brodie Taylor earned a First Team nod on special teams. Taylor was sixth in the country for punts inside the 20-yard line with 11, more than half the punts he kicked. He also launched the fourth-longest punt of the year with a 70-yarder against Iowa Western at the beginning of the season.

Quarterback Garrison Beach, who went down with an injury in the national championship after getting the Badgers a two-score lead, was one of seven Second Team recipients for Snow. Beach was a top-2 quarterback in most metrics and led the nation in touchdown passes with 24. He completed 122 passes for 1717 yards, averaging 8.9 yards per attempt.

Joining Beach on the Second Team offense were running back Seth Kaelin, tight end Tevita Noa, and offensive lineman Josh Soifua.

On the Second Team defense were defensive lineman Tui Aiono and defensive back Xavier Delong.

Freshman Taylor Larsen earned a Second Team nod at special teams for playing the snapper position, while at the same time, he earned an Honorable Mention at wide receiver.

Other Honorable Mentions went to offensive linemen Cormac Boyer and Zack Mendoza, defensive lineman Max Christensen and kicker Stockton Lund.