June 17, 2014
By Andy Sneddon, CMUChippewas.com -
MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. - Eight Central Michigan football players were named to Phil Steele's 2014 Preseason All-Mid-American Conference team.
CMU wide receiver Titus Davis and defensive tackle Leterrius Walton were named to the First Team Offense and the First Team Defense, respectively.
Davis, a 6-foot-2, 190-pound senior from Wheaton, Ill., caught 61 passes for 1,109 yards and eight touchdowns in 2013, when the Chippewas finished 6-6.
Davis averaged 18.2 yards per catch, 100.8 yards per game, and his longest past reception of the year covered 97 yards. Davis was second in the MAC in receiving yards per game, and seventh in all-purpose yards per game (118.3).
Among returning players nationwide, Davis is first in career yards per catch with an 18.9-yard average, and is second in career receiving yards (2,720). Davis was named First Team All-MAC last season, and earned the Herb Deromedi Award as the Chippewas' most valuable player.
Walton, a 6-5, 323-pound senior from Clinton Township, Mich., started all 12 of CMU's game in 2013, making 34 tackles and ranking second on the squad with 9 ½ tackles for loss.
CMU offensive linemen Nick Beamish and Andy Phillips were named to Steele's Preseason All-MAC Second Team Offense, and Chippewa middle linebacker Justin Cherocci earned a spot on the Second Team Defense.
Also for CMU, running back Saylor Lavallii was named to the Fourth Team Offense, while defensive end Blake Serpa and cornerback Jason Wilson were selected to the Fourth Team Defense.
Beamish, a 6-3, 310-pound junior center from Riverview, Mich., was named to the Rimington Trophy Spring Watch List, has started 25 consecutive games for CMU.
Phillips, a 6-3, 306-pound left guard from Lansing, Mich., has made a team-high 30 consecutive starts, won CMU's Offensive Upfront Player of the Year Award in 2013 and was named Second Team All-MAC.
Cherocci, a 6-foot, 231-pound senior from Rochester Hills, Mich., led the MAC in total tackles in 2013 with 121 and ranked 16th in the NCAA with 10.1 tackles per game. He earned Third Team All-MAC honors a year ago, and was named CMU's Defensive Upfront Co-Player of the Year. Cherocci tied for the team lead in sacks (4) and ranked second in tackles for loss (9 ½) a year ago.
Lavallii, a 5-9, 213-pound junior from Mason, Mich., stepped up when feature back Zurlon Tipton was injured in the 2013 season-opener, and led the Chippewas in rushing attempts (182) and rushing yards (807), and he scored six touchdowns. He recorded three 100-yard rushing games and was second on the team with 889 all-purpose yards.
Wilson, a 6-foot, 185-pound senior from Farmington Hills, Mich., started all 12 games a year ago at cornerback, tying for the team lead in interceptions (3) and pass breakups (5). He was fifth on the team with 61 tackles (32 solos).
Serpa, a 6-3, 255-pound junior from Sugar Grove, Ill., totaled 30 tackles (16 solos) a year ago while appearing in all 12 of CMU's games, two of them starts.