Thursday, December 1, 2011

College Sports Madness Names University of Albany Quarterback Dan Di Lella NEC Offensive Player of the Year - UAlbany Sports 2011

Albany, N.Y. - University at Albany's Dan Di Lella has been selected as the College Sports Madness Northeast Conference Offensive Player of the Year in football. Di Lella, a senior quarterback, was among five UAlbany players on the all-conference squad. Bob Ford was recognized by the website as the NEC Coach of the Year.

Di Lella established school single-season records in passing yards (2,548), touchdowns passes (25) and total offense with 2,859 yards. He completed 59.9 percent of his attempts and had a 144.51 efficiency rating. Di Lella also set a program record with seven games of 200 or more passing yards.

Kadeem Williams, a 6-foot-7, 300-pound sophomore, started all 12 games at offensive tackle. UAlbany's offense is 19th in scoring (33.7 ppg), 23rd in total offense (415.3 ypg) and 32nd in rushing (181.7 ypg) among the Division I FCS leaders. He blocked for tailback Andrew Smith, who rushed for 1,092 yards and 10 touchdowns.

Eddie Delaney, a senior defensive end, established the program's FCS record with 9.0 sacks for minus-56 yards. He was sixth on the team in tackles (58) and first in hits for a loss (13.0). Delaney finished his career with 169 tackles and 11.5 sacks.

Paul Layton is ninth among the NCAA leaders with a 42.6 punting average. He broke Chris Lynch's 2008 school record of 40.9 yards per punt. Layton, a sophomore, had 17 punts of 50 or more yards and placed 21 kicks inside the 20-yard line. Ryan Kirchner, a junior wide receiver, made the All-NEC squad as a return specialist. He caught 56 passes for 615 yards and tied the school's single-season record with 10 touchdown receptions. He accounted for 787 all-purpose yards.

Ford received College Sports Madness' top coach award after leading UAlbany (8-4, NEC 7-1) to a share of the conference championship and the program's first NCAA playoff appearance since 1977. Ford, who started the program at the club level in 1970, is the Division I FCS active leader with 255 career victories.

Paw Prints: UAlbany's Ryan Kirchner was chosen Beyond College Sports (BSN) Division I FCS Receiver of the Week for his performance in the NCAA's first round against Stony Brook on Nov. 26 ... Kirchner caught 12 passes for 143 yards and one touchdown ... Kirchner was one off Andy Shein's 1994 single-game record when he hauled in 13 passes against Brockport.

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