Payne tabbed First-Team All-American by Associated Press, leads trio named to squads

Thursday, December 15, 2016
by Cody Bush, PFL Media Relations

NEW YORK – Three Pioneer Football League athletes were named to the 2016 Associated Press All-America Teams, Thursday.

Stetson senior defensive back Donald Payne was named a First-Team All-America this season after earning second-team honors last season. He was joined on the first-team by North Dakota junior Cole Reyes, Saint Francis (Pa.) junior Lorenzo Jerome and The Citadel junior Dee Delaney. Last month, Payne became the first PFL athlete to be named Defensive Player of the Year three times during their career. He ranked third among FCS defenders with 7.4 solo tackles per game, ranked fifth in total tackles per game (11.4) and was 17th in tackles for loss per game (1.6).

Drake senior tight end Eric Saubert was a second-team selection a year after earning third-team honors from the Associated Press. He ranked second among FCS tight ends in receiving yards per game (70.5) and touchdown receptions (10). Saubert led Drake with a career-best 56 receptions and 776 receiving yards.

San Diego senior running back Jonah Hodges became the first Torero football athlete to earn All-America honors since 2011 (Blake Oliaro). He finished the season ranked third among FCS players in total touchdowns (20), fourth in all-purpose yards (175.3 ypg), fourth in rushing touchdowns (18) and fifth in rushing yards (1,454).