INDIANAPOLIS – A total of 21 Ohio Dominican football players earned All-G-MAC recognition and Kelly Cummings was recognized as the conference's coach of the year in voting conducted by the league's head coaches.
The Panthers were tops with 11 first team performers and won five of the eight individual awards.
Senior quarterback Grant Russell (Newark, Ohio) was named the G-MAC Player of the Year, junior wide receiver Cory Contini (Dover, Ohio) was named the G-MAC Offensive Back of the Year, freshman punter Logen Neidhardt (Hicksville, Ohio) was named the G-MAC Special Teams Player of the Year and freshman wide receiver Devanaire Conliffe (Willoughby, Ohio) was named the G-MAC Freshman of the Year.
Sophomore running back EJ Colson (Middletown, Ohio) burst onto the scene in the second half of the season. He ran for 844 yards on 133 carries, averaging 84.4 yards per game and 6.3 yards per carry, and also had nine rushing touchdowns. He ranked fourth in the league in rushing yards. Colson also hauled in 15 passes for 156 yards and a score. He ran for at least 106 yards in five of the last six games and picked up G-MAC Player of the Week honors after rushing for 153 yards and four touchdowns against Alderson Broaddus.
Contini put together one of the finest seasons in school history, pulling down 14 touchdowns and becoming the first Panther receiver to average more than 100 yards per game. He finished with 1,186 yards and caught at least one touchdown in eight games, including each of the last seven. He had six 100 yard games and had at least 89 yards in nine games. In the final two games, Contini had 11 catches for 332 yards and seven touchdowns. Nationally, Contini ranks sixth in yards per game, fifth in touchdowns and 13th in receptions per game, leading the conference in all three categories.
Sophomore safety Gus Dimmerling (Perrysburg, Ohio) started all 10 games and ranked third on the team with 68 tackles and also picked off two passes. He picked off a pass at Penn and another at Malone and made a season-high 10 tackles at Walsh. Dimmerling finished with eight tackles in four other games as well. In two seasons, he has made 148 tackles and has three career interceptions. He tied for 12th in the league in tackles.
Junior defensive end Brian Hunter (Mayfield, Ohio) made nine starts and finished with 52 tackles (9.0 tackles for loss) and 5.5 sacks. He also forced a fumble, recovered one, and blocked a kick. Hunter ranked third in the conference in sacks and fifth in tackles for loss. He had eight tackles in three different games and at least a half sack in six games.
Junior defensive tackle Tristan Kehres (Shelby, Ohio) started all 10 games and ranked fourth on the team with 64 tackles (5.0 tackles for loss), which is 15th in the conference and most amongst defensive tackles. He also finished with two sacks. Kehres had 15 tackles in the win against Walsh, the most by a defensive lineman in school history, and finished with 12 tackles (2.5 TFL) and a sack against Kentucky Wesleyan. He also had a pair of tackles for loss at Malone and broke up two passes at Lake Erie.
Senior linebacker Cameron Kohl (Hilliard, Ohio) led the Panthers with 91 tackles and finished his career with 262 tackles, which ranks fourth in school history. This fall, he also had 7.5 tackles for loss and three sacks, ranking second in the league in total tackles and eighth in TFL. Kohl had 10 or more tackles in each of the final four games and had six games with 10 or more tackles, including a 13 tackle (2.5 TFL) performance at Ashland with a sack.
Senior center Andrew Lorenz (Dublin, Ohio) started all 10 games for the Panthers and made 37 starts in his career. He helped the Panther offense rank fifth in the country in yards per game (510.5) and third in passing offense (343.6). In 2015, he was named Honorable Mention All-GLIAC.
Senior safety/linebacker Tre McIntyre (North Lewisburg, Ohio) started all 10 games and finished second on the team with 76 tackles (3.0 TFL). He led the team with 13 tackles against Findlay and also had 11 tackles in wins over Lake Erie and Walsh. McIntyre intercepted a pass at Alderson Broaddus and made eight tackles at California (Pa.) as well. He played in 40 games in his career, tallying 178 tackles and picking off five passes. McIntyre tied for fifth in the G-MAC in tackles.
Sophomore linebacker Camren Moore (New Carlisle, Ohio) registered 52 tackles in 10 games this fall and also forced a fumble. He had a season-high 10 tackles (1.0 TFL) in the win over Hillsdale and also had eight tackles against Malone and seven at Ashland. In 21 games played, Moore has made 104 tackles.
Neidhardt had a tremendous debut season for the Panthers, earning two G-MAC Player of the Week honors and averaging 40.8 yards per punt. He placed 11 of his 42 punts inside the opponent's 20, forced seven fair catches, and only had two touchbacks. Neidhardt had a long punt of 58 yards against Findlay and averaged 46.0 yards per punt in seven kicks at Penn. He also had punts of 53 and 54 yards. He ranked second in the league in punting average, which is 26th in the country.
Russell authored one of the best single-seasons in school history, tossing for 30 touchdowns against just three interceptions. A two-time G-MAC Player of the Week, Russell leads Division II in completion percentage (72.5) and averaged 318.2 yards per game. He is a nominee for the Harlon Hill Trophy, awarded annually to the Division II Player of the Year. Russell closed the regular season second in the country in passing efficiency and yards per pass attempt, fifth in passing yards per game, seventh in passing touchdowns and seventh in total offense.
Senior left tackle Zack Williams (Hilliard, Ohio) started all 10 games for the Panthers and made 43 starts in his career. A nominee for the Upshaw Award as the best lineman in the country, he played in 45 games in his career at both tackle positions and was a starter on ODU's 2014 team that was ranked No. 4 nationally. He helped the Panther offense rank fifth in the country in yards per game (510.5) and third in passing offense (343.6). In 2015, Williams was named Honorable Mention All-GLIAC.
Junior corner Tawain Gordon (Columbus, Ohio) started all 10 games and made 34 tackles (24 solo) while intercepting three passes. He picked off two passes in the win at Alderson Broaddus, then made another interception the following week at Walsh. He made six tackles in the win over Findlay and had five tackles with two break ups at California (Pa.).
Sophomore tight end Wyatt McLeod (Myakka City, Fla.) started the final nine games and finished the season with 10 catches for 147 yards and a score. He caught a touchdown in the win over Lake Erie, had a 49 yard reception in the victory against Hillsdale, and set a career high with 53 yards at Walsh, including a 34 yard grab.
Sophomore receiver David Turner (Fort Wayne, Ind.) started all 10 games and hauled in 68 passes for 909 yards and seven touchdowns. He had four 100 yard games, including a season-high 164 yards on nine catches with two touchdowns at Ashland. Turner also had 150 yards and a score at Alderson Broaddus and caught at least four passes in every game. He also averaged 20.9 yards on kick returns and finished the season with 1,430 all-purpose yards. Turner was second in the league in all-purpose yards, second in receptions per game and fourth in yards per game.
Sophomore linebacker Jalen M. Christian (Dayton, Ohio) came back from injury to start the final seven games and finished with 28 tackles. He had seven tackles, all solo, at Malone, and also made seven stops in the win over Findlay.
Conliffe played in the final eight games and finished the year with 21 catches for 314 yards and seven touchdowns. He caught two touchdowns against Lake Erie and had a tremendous final two games of the season. He finished with four grabs for 81 yards and a score against Kentucky Wesleyan, then had a pair of 35 yard touchdown catches in the fourth quarter against Findlay to finish with 90 yards in that win.
Senior left guard Tyler Edwards-Frick (Nashport, Ohio) started all 10 games for the Panthers. He made 28 starts in his career at both guard positions. He helped the Panther offense rank fifth in the country in yards per game (510.5) and third in passing offense (343.6).
Freshman right guard Jake Garrison (Clarksville, Ohio) started all 10 games for the Panthers after redshirting last year. He helped the Panther offense rank fifth in the country in yards per game (510.5) and third in passing offense (343.6).
Freshman corner Shyoun Petteway (Steubenville, Ohio) burst onto the scene as he started ODU's final seven games. He finished with 56 tackles (34 solo) and tied for the G-MAC lead with four interceptions as he won two conference Player of the Week awards. He made 15 tackles, intercepted a pass and recovered a fumble in the win over Hillsdale, and had another pick and fumble recovery in the victory against Findlay. Petteway also made 10 stops with an interception and three pass break ups at Malone.
Sophomore receiver Cedric Washington (Knoxville, Tenn.) started all 10 games and was third on the team with 34 catches for 539 yards. He also caught three touchdowns. Washington tallied 137 yards on five grabs and scored twice in the opener at California (Pa.) and had 107 yards with a score at Penn. He also finished with 87 yards against Hillsdale.
COACH OF THE YEAR
Cummings helped guide Ohio Dominican to a seventh straight season of winning at least seven games. Despite playing a Division II schedule that was 30th in the country and playing an FCS opponent, the Panthers won the G-MAC in their inaugural season in the league. Cummings has an overall record of 14-7 in his two years guiding ODU.
Contact: Scott Miles