Waco, Texas - Saint Xavier University senior linebacker Zach Dolph (Crest Hill, Ill./Joliet Catholic) was named to the second team of the 2013 American Football Coaches Association (AFCA)-NAIA All-America Football Team when it was announced Wednesday morning by the AFCA. This year's AFCA-NAIA All-America Football Team is comprised of two 25-man teams, one first team and one second team, which were all selected by the AFCA-NAIA All-America Committee. The AFCA has selected an All-America team since 1945 and currently selects teams in all five divisions of college football.
"Zach belongs in the same sentence with the best linebackers who have ever played here," said SXU head football coach Mike Feminis
. "He was a key member of our national championship team and was like a coach on the field. We're going to miss him big time."
Dolph led the Cougars in total tackles for the second straight season with 112 stops (46 solos, 66 assists). He also tallied four forced fumbles, a fumble recovery, three interceptions, five pass break-ups, 6.5 tackles for losses and three sacks in helping lead SXU to a 7-4 record and a No. 18 national ranking in the final NAIA Football Coaches' Top 25 Poll. Dolph was named the NAIA Football Defensive Player of the Week twice this season (Sept. 9, Oct. 28) and set a single game record at SXU with 23 tackles (five solo, 18 assists) in a victory over William Penn (Iowa) on Oct. 26.
Dolph is currently a finalist for the inaugural Cliff Harris Award given to the top small college defensive player in the country. He was also named a first team selection on both the 2013 Capital One College Division Academic All-America® Football Team and the 2013 Mid-States Football Association (MSFA) All-Midwest League Team. Last season, Dolph set a new school record by posting 128 total tackles (64 solos, 64 assists) on the year.
Saint Xavier finished the 2013 season with an overall record of 7-4. The Cougars finished third in the final MSFA Midwest League standings with a 4-2 mark and ranked No. 18 in the final NAIA Football Coaches' Top 25 Poll.