he Murray State football team had six players named to one of two All-OVC teams Tuesday morning, including five that garnered first team honors.
Linebacker Quincy Williams, defensive lineman Kenney Wooten, punter Steve Dawson, kicker Gabriel Vicente and return specialist Malik Honeycutt all received first-team accolades, while Drew Anderson was named to the second team. The six total All-OVC honors is the most for the Racers since 2011, while the five first-team honors is the most since 2002. In addition, both Honeycutt and Anderson were named to the All-Newcomer team as well.
Williams had an outstanding senior season in which he amassed 111 tackles, including 78 solo. His 7.1 solo tackles per game not only led the OVC, but they were also the second most in the nation. In addition, the senior had 9.5 tackles for loss and two interceptions, with each of the interception returns going for 80-plus yards and one going for a touchdown.
For the second consecutive season, Wooten led the OVC in sacks, this year with 10.5. He dropped opposing quarterbacks for a total of 62 yards and also had a team-high 12.0 tackles-for-loss for a total of 70 yards. Wooten ended the year with 42 total tackles, four pass breakups, eight hurries, two forced fumbles and a blocked kick.
Before arriving at fall camp, Dawson had never been to America or played a down of an actual football game, but after just 11 games he has cemented himself as the best in the OVC. The Aussie punted the ball 54 times this season for an average of 42.1 yards per punt. Of his 54 punts, 16 pinned opponents inside their own 20 and a league-high 10 went for 50 yards or more. His season-long punt of 66 came during last week’s season-finale at Austin Peay.
Prior to Week 11, Honeycutt was a serving in a backup capacity when it came to returns. All that changed against Southeast Missouri when the junior inserted himself into the kick return unit with just 20 seconds left and ran 79 yards for a touchdown that sealed the MSU comeback win over the ranked Redhawks. The following week, Honeycutt took a punt 80 yards for a score against Austin Peay in a game where he ran back kickoffs and punts and finished with 137 all-purpose yards.
Two years ago, Vicente was play Division III soccer, today he is a two-time All-OVC kicker, including his first-team honor this year. The junior was 15-for-19 on the year with a long of 50, the second 50-plus yarder of his career and connected on each of his first nine attempts of the season. In addition, he went 34-for-36 on PATs on the year and his career field goal percentage of 78.3 percent is the highest in school history.
Anderson’s one season at Murray State will go down as one of the most memorable in program history. The senior transfer went 258-for-459 on the season for 2,864 yards with 20 touchdowns and 16 interceptions. His 2,864 yards is the ninth most in single-season history for the Racers and his 258 completions went down as the sixth most in school history, in addition to leading the OVC at 23.5 per game. On top of his prolific passing, Anderson rushed for 225 yards and five touchdowns. Perhaps, though, he will most be remembered for bouncing back from is three interception and a fumble first half against SEMO, to lead the Racers from being down, 31-0, to the biggest comeback in program history.