WICHITA FALLS, Texas (December 13, 2017) - Colorado State University-Pueblo junior Darius Williams (CB, Gilbert, Ariz.) was selected as D2CCA All-America First Team Defense Wednesday, released by the Collegiate Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).
The All-American honor is the second for Williams this season, as he was named to the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Division II All-America Second Team.
Junior Brandon Payer (ILB, Pine, Colo.) was recognized as AFCA All-American First Team to total two All-Americans for the ThunderWolves this season. Since the restart of the program in 2008 there have been 42 members of the Pack to gather All-American awards from any publication.
MORE ABOUT THE D2CCA AND THE ALL-AMERICAN TEAMS
The Division II Conference Commissioners Association (D2CCA) encourages and promotes Division II athletics and high standards of sportsmanship as important elements of higher education. The CCA is a key communications link among the conferences as they discuss views, policies and regulations that impact Division II intercollegiate athletics and works closely with the NCAA as a communications channel to NCAA Division II member colleges and universities.
Super Region Four (CSU-Pueblo's Region) boasted a total of 12 first-team All Americans followed by Super Regions 1 and 3 with six each. SR4 totaled 18 players on the D2CCA All-America squad followed by SR1 with 13 and SR3 with 11 while SR2 finished with eight.
The Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference totaled three awards with Williams gathering the lone first team honor.
D2CCA All-America First Team ... AFCA All-America Second Team ... D2CCA All-Region First Team ... All-RMAC First Team ... Williams finished the regular season T-2nd in NCAA Division II for interceptions with eight, which is also a CSU-Pueblo program record ... Returned those eight interceptions for 176 yards (5th in Division II) and three touchdowns (T-1st in Division II) ... Added nine pass break-ups to finish 2nd in the RMAC in passes defended (17), which also ranks T-23rd nationally ... Compiled 46 tackles (34 solo) with 4.5 tackles for loss (-13 yards) and a sack (-6 yards) ... Forced a fumble in the playoff game at Minnesota State (Nov. 18) ... Named RMAC Player of the Week once in 2017 ... CSU-Pueblo finished the regular season 4th nationally in both interceptions (21) and team passing efficiency defense (88.95) and were 10th in scoring defense (14.3 ppg) and total defense (273.5 ypg).
THE THUNDERWOLVES IN 2017
The Pack finished the season with a 9-3 overall record, while their 9-1 Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference mark was good for a share of the league title. CSU-Pueblo advanced to the NCAA Division II playoffs as a seven seed. The ThunderWolves fell 16-13 in overtime to No. 1 overall and No. 2 seed Minnesota State University, Mankato.
The defense closed the regular season top 20 nationally in eight categories, red zone defense (3rd, 57.7%), interceptions (4th, 21), team passing efficiency defense (4th, 88.95), defensive touchdowns (7th, 5), scoring defense (10th, 14.3), total defense (10th, 273.5), turnovers gained (11th, 27) and passing yards allowed (18th, 164.6).
The Pack also finished the regular season top 25 in Division II in turnover margin (17th, 1,0), net punting (20th, 36.8), kick returns (23rd, 23.0), red zone offense (23rd, 88%) and scoring offense (24th, 37.6).
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As a member of the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference, Colorado State University – Pueblo competes in 22 varsity sports in NCAA Division II intercollegiate athletics.