NMSU Football: Eight Named Phil Steele’s Preseason All-Sun Belt

Courtesy of NMSU

CLEVELAND, Ohio – Eight NM State football players have been named to Phil Steele’s Preseason All-Sun Belt Team as announced on Monday.

Wide receiver Teldrick Morgan and offensive lineman Isaiah Folasa-Lutui were First Team picks. Morgan led the Aggies with 1,361 all-purpose yards and had seven touchdowns during the 2014 season, while Folasa-Lutui was part of an offensive line that allowed quarterback Tyler Rogers to complete 268 out of 436 pass attempts for 2,779 yards.

Linebacker Rodney Butler earned a Second Team All-Sun Belt selection after he led the Aggies with 119 tackles, which included 58 solo and 61 assisted tackles. Butler collected eight games with double-digit tackles and had a career-high 17 tackles at UTEP on Sept. 13.

Running back Larry Rose III earned Third Team honors after he led the Aggies in rushing with 1,102 yards on 186 carries and had nine touchdowns during the 2014 season. Rose III was the first NM State football player to eclipse the 1,000-yard rushing mark since 2011 and the first freshman to accomplish this feat since 1995.

Defensive end Kalei Auelua, linebacker Derek Ibekwe and Morgan, who was also NM State’s kick returner, joined Rose III on the Preseason Third Team. Ibekwe amassed 102 tackles (46 solo, 56 assisted) in 2014, while Auelua racked up 43 tackles with a career-high 11 tackles against Georgia Southern on Oct. 4. As a kick returner, Morgan had 16 returns for 369 yards to average 23.1 yards per kick return.

Offensive lineman Andy Cunningham was selected to Phil Steele’s Preseason All-Sun Belt Fourth Team. Cunningham started in six games and joined Folasa-Lutui on the offensive line that allowed Rogers to throw for 19 touchdowns in 2014.

The Aggies open the season with a trip to Gainesville, Fla. to face Florida on Sept. 5. Kickoff is TBA.

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