The University of Tulsa landed a total of 10 players on the 2012 All-Conference football teams as selected by the league's 12 head football coaches. The C-USA Champion Golden Hurricane produced the most total selections with 10, while East Division champion UCF had the most first team choices with six, followed by Tulsa's five.
Tulsa's 10 selections include five on each side of the ball, as well as five first-team selections and five second-team honorees. The Hurricane also has seven honorable mention performers and four all-freshman team selections.
Defensively, Tulsa led Conference USA in total defense and rush defense this season and is represented on the first team by three seniors, including linebacker DeAundre Brown, defensive end Cory Dorris and safety Dexter McCoil. The Hurricane offense led the league in rushing with 240.2 yards per game and amassed 460.8 yards in total offense. The two first-team selections are senior offensive tackles Brian DeShane and Jared Grigg.
Tulsa's second-team selections are senior center Trent Dupy, sophomore receiver Keyarris Garrett, senior defensive end Jared St. John, junior safety Demarco Nelson and junior kick returner Trey Watts.
Brown, who played all three linebacker positions for the Golden Hurricane this season, leads the Tulsa defense with 125 tackles and 17 stops for -85 yards, while turning in seven double-figure tackle games. He ranks among the league leaders for tackles (6th), sacks (4th), TFLs (3rd) and passes defended (14th).
A four-year starter for the Hurricane, Dorris started his 50th career game in the C-USA Championship Game last week against UCF. He has been credited with 49 tackles, 10 TFLs for -48 yards, six sacks for -38 yards, three pass break-ups and two blocked kicks. Dorris' two blocks were huge for the Hurricane as he blocked a PAT in a one-point win over Fresno State and blocked UCF's field goal attempt in overtime of the C-USA Championship Game.
Early in the season McCoil became the school's career leader for interceptions and will enter the 2012 AutoZone Liberty Bowl with 17 career pick-offs. He ranks second on the team with 85 tackles and has team-highs with four interceptions and nine pass break-ups.
DeShane and Grigg was a part of a unit that allowed the fewest sacks (nine) in C-USA and ranks sixth nationally for fewest sacks allowed and 14th for fewest TFLs allowed. Grigg started all 13 games in his first year as a full-time starter, while DeShane started the first 12 games before suffering a season-ending injury at SMU.
A second-team selection at center for the Hurricane, Dupy was another integral part of the Hurricane offensive front. He has started 46 consecutive games and anchored a line that helped pave the way for Tulsa's ground game to amass 240 yards per contest and rank 11th in NCAA stats for rushing yards.
Garrett burst onto the scene when senior Bryan Burnham suffered a season-ending injury in the first game of the season and completed the year as Tulsa's leading receiver with 64 receptions for 826 yards and nine touchdowns.
A former walk-on athlete, St. John moved into the starting lineup at defensive end this year and leads C-USA for quarterback sacks with 11.5 for -75 yards. He has also totaled 48 stops and forced three fumbles on the year.
Nelson has tallied 78 tackles, four TFLs for -10 yards, three pass break-ups and one interception from his safety position this season.
Leading the conference in all-purpose yardage with 161.8 yards per game, Watts garnered second team accolades as a kick returner. He has totaled 959 rushing yards, 503 kickoff return yards, 326 receiving yards and 154 punt return yards. Watts has scored a total of five TDs this year, three rushing touchdowns and one each on a kick return and punt return. His 54-yard punt return in the conference title game last week against UCF tied the score at 27-27 with 5:06 remaining in the contest.
Honorable mention selections for the Hurricane include quarterback Cody Green, running backs Alex Singleton and Trey Watts, and receiver Jordan James on offense. Defensive honorable mention merits go to defensive tackle Derrick Jackson, linebacker Shawn Jackson and cornerback Lowell Rose.
Conference USA also announced the league's all-freshman team today. Tulsa had two red-shirt freshmen and two true freshmen named to the all-rookie team. Defensive players – end Derrick Alexander and linebacker Trent Martin – were selected to the frosh team, while placekicker Daniel Schwarz and deep snapper Rey Higuera also earned all-freshman team accolades.
Alexander has totaled 18 tackles and 4.5 stops for -25 yards this season, while Martin has 32 tackles and blocked two kicks on the season. Alexander has played in all 13 games, while Martin has seen action in only eight games due to injury, but started five contests.
Schwarz became Tulsa's freshman scoring leader with 81 points, while connecting on 11 field goals and 48 PATs. Higuera, a walk-on athlete, has handled snaps on all placements and punts this season.
Conference USA individual awards will be announced on Wednesday, Dec. 5th.
Tulsa will play Iowa State in the 2012 AutoZone Liberty Bowl on Monday, Dec. 31st in Memphis Tennessee.