BYU's Pitta earns AFCA All-America honors

BYU's Pitta earns AFCA All-America honors

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Press releasePROVO -- BYU senior tight end Dennis Pitta has been named to the 2009 AFCA Coaches' All-America Team announced Thursday by the American Football Coaches Association.

A finalist for the John Mackey Award as the nation's top tight end, Pitta leads all tight ends this year in receiving yards (784), receptions (57) and receiving yards per game (65.33) while ranking second in receptions per game (4.75) and third in touchdowns (7). This season Pitta became BYU's all-time leader in total receptions overall and career record holder among tight ends in receiving yards. He has helped BYU earn a 10-2 record and No. 14 ranking in the BCS Standings.

A native of Moorpark, Calif., Pitta is the 13th Cougar to be named to the prestigious AFCA All-America Team and the first BYU tight end to make the team since Itula Mili in 1996. Overall, he is the fourth Cougar tight end to earn AFCA All-America accolades as Pitta and Mili were preceded by Chris Smith (1990) and Hall of Famer Gordon Hudson (1982 and 1983).

Other AFCA All-Americans from BYU include Marc Wilson (QB, 1979), Nick Eyre (OL, 1980), Jim McMahon (QB, 1980 and 1981), Steve Young (QB, 1983), Jason Buck (DL, 1986), Pat Thompson (P, 1988), Ty Detmer (QB, 1991), Luke Staley (RB, 2001) and Matt Payne (P, 2004).

Pitta and TCU defensive lineman Jerry Hughes represent the Mountain West Conference on the 2009 AFCA All-America Team.

The AFCA has selected an All-America team since 1945 and currently selects teams in all five of its divisions. What makes these teams so special is that they are the only ones chosen exclusively by the men who know the players the best — the coaches themselves.

2009 AFCA Coaches' All-America Team


WR Golden Tate 5-11 195 Jr. Notre Dame Charlie Weis Hendersonville, Tenn. (Pope John Paul II)

WR Mardy Gilyard 6-1 187 Sr. Cincinnati Brian Kelly Bunnell, Fla. (Flagler Palm Coast)

TE Dennis Pitta 6-5 247 Sr. BYU Bronco Mendenhall Moorpark, Calif. (Moorpark)

OL Mike Johnson 6-6 305 Sr. Alabama Nick Saban Pensacola, Fla. (Pine Crest)

OL Russell Okung 6-5 300 Sr. Oklahoma St. Mike Gundy Houston, Texas (Bush)

C Chris Hall 6-4 295 Sr. Texas Mack Brown Irving, Texas (Irving)

OL Trent Williams 6-5 315 Sr. Oklahoma Bob Stoops Longview, Texas (Longview)

OL Mike Iupati 6-6 330 Sr. Idaho Robb Akey Anaheim, Caiif. (Western)

QB Colt McCoy 6-2 210 Sr. Texas Mack Brown Tuscola, Texas (Jim Ned)

RB Mark Ingram 5-10 215 So. Alabama Nick Saban Flint, Mich. (Southwestern)

RB Toby Gerhart 6-1 235 Sr. Stanford Jim Harbaugh Norco, Calif. (Norco)


DL Ndamukong Suh 6-4 300 Sr. Nebraska Bo Pelini Portland, Ore. (Grant)

DL Jerry Hughes 6-3 257 Sr. TCU Gary Patterson Sugar Land, Texas (Austin)

DL Jared Odrick 6-5 296 Sr. Penn St. Joe Paterno Lebanon, Pa. (Lebanon)

DL Derrick Morgan 6-4 272 Jr. Georgia Tech Paul Johnson Coatesville, Pa. (Coatesville)

DL Brian Price 6-2 300 Jr. UCLA Rick Neuheisel Los Angeles, Calif. (Crenshaw)

LB Rolando McClain 6-4 258 Jr. Alabama Nick Saban Decatur, Ala. (Decatur)

LB Greg Jones 6-1 228 Jr. Michigan St. Mark Dantonio Cincinnati, Ohio (Moeller)

DB Eric Berry* 5-11 195 Jr. Tennessee Lane Kiffin Fairburn, Ga. (Creekside)

DB Joe Haden 5-11 190 Jr. Florida Urban Meyer Fort Washington, Md. (Friendly)

DB Javier Arenas 5-9 198 Sr. Alabama Nick Saban Tampa, Fla. (Robinson)

DB Earl Thomas 5-10 197 So. Texas Mack Brown Orange, Texas (West Orange Stark)


P Drew Butler 6-2 203 So. Georgia Mark Richt Duluth, Ga. (Peachtree Ridge)

PK Kai Forbath 6-0 192 Jr. UCLA Rick Neuheisel Pacific Palisades, Calif. (Notre Dame)

AP C.J. Spiller 5-11 195 Sr. Clemson Dabo Swinney Lake Butler, Fla. (Union County)

(Courtesy Brigham Young University)

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