Home » College football: Bulldogs receive 15 preseason All-Conference USA selections by Athlon Sports

College football: Bulldogs receive 15 preseason All-Conference USA selections by Athlon Sports

by Russell Hedges

Louisiana Tech Athletic Communications

Louisiana Tech garnered 15 selections on the Athlon Sports Preseason All-Conference USA teams, the publication announced Thursday.

The Bulldogs’ 15 selections were the second most in the conference trailing only Western Kentucky with 17.  

LA Tech earned six first-team honors. Running back Marquis Crosby, safety Cecil Singleton Jr., and wide receiver Smoke Harris all were given first-team recognition at their respective positions. Harris was also named first-team kick and punt returner, while sophomore wide receiver Cyrus Allentook home first-team all-purpose honors.

Crosby had a breakout season in 2022, rushing for 918 yards and nine touchdowns on 183 carries. The Hattiesburg, Miss., product, ranked sixth nationally among all freshmen in total rushing (918) and fourth among C-USA backs in yards per rush (5.0). He eclipsed the century mark in rushing during four games, highlighted by a 197-yard rushing performance during the Dogs’ 52-17 win over Stephen F. Austin on Sept. 10. As a result of this efforts, he earned honorable mention Freshman All-American Honors from College Football News.

Singleton Jr. made an immediate impact for Tech after transferring from Miami of Ohio prior to the 2022 season. He appeared in all 12 games and ranked fifth on the team with 56 total tackles (35 solo and 21 assisted) while leading the Bulldogs with three forced fumbles in addition to tallying six tackles for loss.

Harris is the Bulldogs’ most experienced skill player, as he will be entering his sixth season in 2023. In his five seasons in Ruston, Harris has hauled in 225 passes for 2,112 yards and 19 touchdowns. The St. Francisville, La., product recorded a team-best 65 receptions and 635 receiving yards in 2022 with five touchdown receptions. As a return man, he accumulated 236 yards on 19 punt returns while returning 19 kickoffs for 517 yards.

Allen will look to build off a breakout freshman season in which he averaged 22.73 yards per catch which were the second most nationally, while ranking sixth nationally among all true freshmen in receiving yards with 500. Allen also led all C-USA true freshmen in receiving touchdowns with four. The New Orleans product also led all FBS freshmen in scrimmage plays over 30 yards with 10.

Tech garnered five second-team selections as quarterback Hank Bachmeier and offensive lineman Abraham Delfin were the offensive selections on the squad. Defensively, defensive lineman Deshon Hall, linebacker Hugh Davis, and cornerback Willie Roberts were the LA Tech representatives. Kicker Jacob Barnes also was selected to the specialists second team.

Bachmeier comes to Tech from Boise State, where he was a Johnny Unitas Award watchlist selection a year ago. The Murrieta, Calif., native passed for over 6,600 yards and 41 touchdowns during his four seasons at Boise State.

Delfin is the most experienced Bulldog on the roster, as he will be returning for his seventh season this fall, having started the last 25 games he appeared in while earning honorable mention All-C-USA honors in 2020 and 2021.

The preseason second-team selection marks the second straight year Hall has received the honor. Hall had 29 tackles a year ago, including four for loss, two pass breakups, two quarterback hurries, and a blocked kick.

Davis led LA Tech with 79 total tackles, which included a team-high 42 assisted stops. The Boston College transfer had four tackles for loss, three pass breakups, a quarterback hurry and a fumble recovery.

Roberts appeared in all 12 games while starting 11 at cornerback. He recorded 29 total tackles (23 solo, 6 assists), and a quarterback hurry. The Fort Worth, Texas product posted a team-high four interceptions and six pass breakups, highlighted by an 18-yard pick-six interception against Middle Tennessee.

Barnes earned second-team preseason honors for the second-consecutive season. The Baton Rouge, native has been one of the country’s most accurate kickers, going 110-111 (99.1%) in career extra points and 42-53 in career field goal attempts (79.2%).

Offensive lineman Bert Hale was the Bulldogs’ lone third-team selection, while fellow offensive linemen Carson Bruno and Dakota White appeared on the fourth team.

LA Tech has six home games at Joe Aillet Stadium during the 2023 season. The Bulldogs will open with a week zero conference matchup with FIU (Aug. 26), before hosting non-conference foes Northwestern State (Sept. 9) and North Texas (Sept. 16). Tech closes out the home slate in conference play with Western Kentucky (Oct. 5), New Mexico State (Oct. 24) and a bout with Sam Houston (Nov. 11).

Season tickets for the 2023 Louisiana Tech football season are on sale now. Fans can purchase season tickets online at LATechSports.com/tickets or by calling the LA Tech Ticket Office at (318) 257-3631.

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