DURHAM, N.C. – Led by Preseason All-America third team selection Ross Martin, six members of the Duke football team were selected to the Phil Steele’s 2013 Preseason All-ACC Team.
Martin, a Freshman All-America in 2012, was joined on the first team by defensive back Ross Cockrell. Wide receiver Jamison Crowder and punter Will Monday earned second-team honors, while offensive tackle Perry Simmons and offensive guard Laken Tomlinson received third-team recognition.
Martin, a sophomore, turned in one of the best placekicking seasons of any player in Duke history as a true freshman, coming up successful on 20-of-23 field goal attempts and 46-of-47 extra point attempts. The All-ACC honorable mention selection broke several of Duke’s single-season records, including total points (106), most made PATs and most attempted PATs.
Cockrell, a redshirt senior, was a first team All-ACC selection in 2012 after totaling an ACC-leading five interceptions, 18 passes defended and 71 tackles while starting all 13 games for the Blue Devils. He also scored two touchdowns, returning a blocked field goal 75 yards against FIU and an interception 32 yards against N.C. Central.
Crowder, a junior, caught 76 passes for 1,074 yards and eight touchdowns in his first full season as a starter to tie teammate Conner Vernon for the team lead in receiving yards and touchdowns. Crowder earned All-ACC honorable mention honors for his performance, which also included an NCAA-record tying 99-yard touchdown reception as part of a 203-yard, two-touchdown performance against Miami.
Monday emerged as one of the top punters in the nation as a redshirt freshman, averaging an ACC-leading 44.6 yards per punt on the way to earning All-ACC first team honors. Of his 67 punts, 20 went 50 yards or longer, and 19 landed inside the opponent 20-yard line.
Simmons, an All-ACC honorable mention pick last season as a redshirt junior, started all 13 games at right tackle and anchored a Duke offensive line that opened lanes for a rushing attack that averaged 125.2 yards per game on the ground. Behind his blocking, Duke scored 18 rushing touchdowns and had all three members of its three-headed running back rotation – Jela Duncan, Josh Snead and Juwan Thompson – average at least 4.7 yards per rush.
Tomlinson occupied the left guard spot on the Duke offensive line, paving the way for Duke’s ground game as well as providing protection for a Duke passing game that averaged 283.9 yards per game in the air. Tomlinson has started all 25 games since his freshman season.