Dec. 17 – BETHANY, W. Va. – Led by first-team selections, junior Nadim Raddar (Laurel, Md./Old Mill) and senior Stephen Amic (McDonald, Pa./West Allegheny), the Bethany college football team placed five players on the USA College Football All-American Teams, announced USAcollegefootball.org this week. Joining Raddar and Amic on the list were senior Wyssmy Despagne (Riverdale, Pa./Parkdale), junior Eric Blinn (Beaver, Pa./Western Beaver) and freshman Chris Ray (Henrico, Va./Mills E. Godwin).
Raddar adds another award to his long list of accolades from 2014, as this marks the second First-Team All-American award that he has earned. Earlier this month he was also named an All-American by the American Football Coaches’ Association. This year’s Presidents’ Athletic Conference Defensive Player of the Year, Raddar totaled 74 tackles in nine regular season games. During that same span, he posted 21.5 tackles for loss while recording 12.5 sacks, both which ranked among the Nation’s best.
After earning a Third-Team Preseason All-American selection by USA Football Network, Inc. prior to the season, Amic capped his career by being named a First-Team selection. In 2014, Amic was the top punter in the PAC, averaging a career-best 40.4 yards per punt. He totaled 12 punts of over 50 yards on the year which marked the same amount that he had posted in his previous three years, combined. He also placed a career-best 21 punts inside the opponents’ 20-yard line, which also led the conference.
Blinn, who was named a First-Team Preseason All-American by the same group, earned a second-team award again following the year. Blinn caught a career high 106 receptions while also scoring a career-best nine touchdowns. He finished the year with 1,035 yards receiving, becoming the only player in Bethany College history to record back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons. Over the course of the year, Blinn became the first player at Bethany to catch at least 100 passes and broke two separate career marks, including total receiving yards, and total receptions. He also stands just two touchdown catches shy of the career mark, currently boasting 23 in three seasons.
Despagne was given the nod as an Honorable Mention All-American selection after being named a Second-Team Preseason All-American. Despagne finished the 2014 season by earning his second-straight First-Team All-PAC selection. He earned his all-conference selection by recording 51 tackles including 38 solo stops this season. He also ranked second on the team in passes defended with nine, including one interception on the year.
Earning Honorable Mention All-PAC in his first year as a Bison, freshman kicker Ray was given the nod as an Honorable Mention All-Freshman Team selection. Ray brought consistency to a facet of the team that has missed it in years past. During his freshman campaign, Ray converted on 26-30 on extra points and as 6-of-9 on field goals. In seven of his ten games, Ray was perfect on extra points, including going 6-6 in a victory over Thiel early in the year.
Along with the accolades, any senior, with no remaining football eligibility, is a candidate to compete in the 21st Annual USA Football Bowl. Amic, who fits the criteria, will be attending the bowl held in Jackson, Miss. from January 16-January 20, 2015.