Philyaw, Leonard Highlight 2017 MEAC Preseason Football Teams

Courtesy MEAC Media Relations

NORFOLK, Va. – Howard University running back Anthony Philyaw was selected as the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) Preseason Offensive Player of the Year, while South Carolina State linebacker Darius Leonard was selected as the Preseason Defensive Player of the Year.

All votes were submitted by the MEAC’s 11 head football coaches and sports information directors.

A 2016 All-MEAC First teamer, Philyaw was the MEAC’s second-leading rusher last fall with 1,230 yards and nine touchdowns on 222 attempts. Philyaw averaged 123 yards per game and 5.5 yards per carry with his longest run spanning 68 yards. He ranked second in scoring touchdowns (9) and second in all-purpose yardage (144.5 ypg) en route to earning MEAC Player of the Week honors once. Philyaw had the highest single-game rushing output in the MEAC last fall with a 281-yard performance versus Delaware State as he was named STATS FCS Player of the Week. The Los Angeles, Calif. native also had 234 yards versus Monmouth along with four additional 100-yard outings, including 112 yards versus Rutgers of the Big 10 Conference.

Leonard continues South Carolina State’s strong tradition of defensive play as last season’s MEAC Defensive Player of the Year honor marked the fourth consecutive season an SC State defender has earned the postseason award. He led the MEAC in tackles last season with 124, 3.5 sacks and two interceptions. The Lake View, S.C. native had 10-plus tackles in seven of SC State’s 11 games highlighted by a 19-tackle performance at College Football Playoff National Champion Clemson on Sept. 17. Leonard also tallied 16 tackles at UCF and 14 tackles at Howard. He was named the Sheridan Broadcast Network Sports Mel Blount Defensive Player of the Year, an AFCA All-American and the BOXTOROW Willie Davis Defensive Player of the Year Award.

Offensive Player of the Year: Anthony Philyaw, Howard
Defensive Player of the Year: Darius Leonard, South Carolina State

QB Lamar Raynard Jr. North Carolina A&T State High Point, N.C.
RB Anthony Philyaw Sr. Howard Los Angeles, Calif.
RB* Yahkee Johnson Sr. Hampton Richmond, Va.
RB* Ramone Simpson Jr. N.C. Central Wilmington, N.C.
WR Elijah Bell So. North Carolina A&T State Wheeling, W. Va.
WR* Brandon Norwood Sr. Florida A&M Atlanta, Ga.
WR* Frank Brown Sr. Bethune-Cookman Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
TE Leroy Hill Jr. North Carolina A&T State Smithfield, N.C.
C Darriel Mack Sr. North Carolina A&T State Clio, S.C.
OL Brandon Parker Sr. North Carolina A&T State Kannapolis, N.C.
OL Nick Leverett So. N.C. Central Concord, N.C.
OL Robbie Stephenson Sr. S.C. State Fairburn, Ga.
OL Justin Evans Sr. S.C. State Florence, S.C.
PK Uriel Hernandez Jr. Bethune-Cookman Homestead, Fla.
DL* Kevin Thompson R-Sr. Bethune-Cookman Baltimore, Md.
DL* Chris Lee Sr. Norfolk State Woodbridge, Va.
DL Ja’Quan Smith Gr. N.C. Central Miramar, Fla.
DL Antonio Brown Sr. N.C. Central Jacksonville, Fla.
LB Darius Leonard R-Sr. S.C. State Lake View, S.C.
LB Dayshawn Taylor R-Sr. S.C. State Lincolnton, Ga.
LB Reggie Hunter Sr. N.C. Central Henderson, N.C.
DB Alden McClellon Jr. N.C. Central Lake Butler, Fla.
DB* Jason Baxter Gr. S.C. State Manning, S.C.
DB* Diquan Richardson Sr. Bethune-Cookman Alvin, S.C.
DB Zerius Lockhart Sr. North Carolina A&T State Auburn, Ala.
P Nathaniel Tilque Sr. N.C. Central Charlotte, N.C.
RS Khris Gardin Sr. North Carolina A&T State Morganton, N.C.
QB Larry Brihm, Jr. Sr. Bethune-Cookman Delray Beach, Fla.
RB Herb Walker, Jr. Sr. Morgan State Cleveland, Ohio
RB Mike Waters So. Delaware State Philadelphia, Pa.
WR Kyle Anthony So. Howard Miami, Fla.
WR Mason Rutherford Sr. Delaware State San Bernardino, Calif.
TE Demetrius Ferebee Sr. Norfolk State Roanoke, Va.
C Victor Ishmael, Jr. Sr. S.C. State Miami, Fla.
OL Osman Aguilera Sr. Florida A&M Miami, Fla.
OL Loubens Polinice So. Florida A&M Palm Coast, Fla.
OL Joshua Fala So. Delaware State Manteca, Calif.
OL Cade Pedro So. Delaware State Kailua, Hawai’i
PK Tyler Scandrett Sr. S.C. State Barnesville, Ga.
DL Steven Smith Sr. Hampton Norfolk, Va.
DL* Jai Franklin Sr. Morgan State Clinton, Md.
DL* Greg Newell Sr. S.C. State McDonough, Ga.
DL Julian McKnight Jr. North Carolina A&T State Conyers, Ga.
LB Trenton Bridges Jr. Bethune-Cookman DeLand, Fla.
LB* Malik Harris Sr. Delaware State Washington, D.C.
LB* Marcus Albert Jr. North Carolina A&T State College Park, Ga.
DB Brendan Cole Sr. Hampton Hampton, Va.
DB Orlando McKinley Jr. Florida A&M Atlanta, Ga.
DB Terry Jefferson So. Florida A&M Miami, Fla.
DB Devondre Powell Sr. S.C. State Miami, Fla.
P Uriel Hernandez Jr. Bethune-Cookman Homestead, Fla.
RS Frank Brown Sr. Bethune-Cookman Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.
QB Ryan Stanley So. Florida A&M Pembroke Pines, Fla.
RB Dorrel McClain Jr. N.C. Central Cary, N.C.
RB Brycen Alleyne Jr. Delaware State Wilmington, Del.
WR Jalen Wilkes Jr. N.C. Central Greenville, S.C.
WR Jawill Davis Sr. Bethune-Cookman Miami, Fla.
TE Desmond Noird Sr. Florida A&M Atlanta, Ga.
C Phillip Norman Sr. Bethune-Cookman Sebastian, Fla.
OL Obinna Nwanko So. Florida A&M Miramar, Fla.
PK Wizdom Nzidee Sr. Delaware State Stone Mountain, Ga.
DL* Stefen Banks Jr. Savannah State Columbus, Ohio
DL* Elijah Price Sr. Florida A&M Jacksonville, Fla.
DL* Kenneth Melton Sr. North Carolina A&T State Elizabeth City, N.C.
DL Tyberius Cravens Sr. S.C. State Austell, Ga.
LB Kyle Archie Sr. Norfolk State Virginia Beach, Va.
LB Mulik Simmons Sr. Savannah State Savannah, Ga.
LB Brian Cavicante So. Delaware State Portsmouth, Va.
DB Carl Garnes Jr. Morgan State Columbus, N.J.
DB Keyjuan Selby Jr. Delaware State Bear, Del.
DB Darius Johnson Jr. Morgan State Baltimore, Md.
DB Davanta Reynolds Jr. N.C. Central Tucker, Ga.
P Fidel Romo-Martinez So. Delaware State Banning, Calif.
RS William King Jr. Morgan State Baltimore, Md.
*  – Indicates tie

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