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Demon kicker earns academic honors on bank team ballot
Nov 10, 2012 | 203 views | 0 0 comments | 2 2 recommendations | email to a friend | print
NATCHITOCHES – Northwestern State senior John Shaughnessy, with a 3.69 grade point average in biology to go with his status as one of the nation’s best kickers, has been voted to the Capital One Academic All-District 6 Team and will be one of eight kickers on the Division I Academic All-America ballot.

 Shaughnessy, a Shreveport-Byrd product who plans to attend medical school, will play his final home game Saturday afternoon at 3 as the Demons (4-5) host third-ranked Sam Houston State (7-2) in a Southland TV contest at Turpin Stadium. Shaughnessy ranks 14th among FCS kickers in field goals per game (1.33) and is tied for 65th in scoring (6.8 points per game).

 The District 6 team includes top student-athletes representing Division I football programs from Louisiana to the Canadian border, encompassing Minnesota, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, Missouri, Arkansas and Louisiana. South Dakota State had a remarkable seven selections on the 24-man roster, which included players from Arkansas, Iowa, Missouri and Minnesota.

 Shaughnessy was one of four state players elected by vote of sports information personnel in the district. Joining him were Louisiana Tech offensive lineman Stephen Warner (senior, 3.41 GPA in civil engineering), running back Ray Holley (graduate student, 3.5 in counseling), and Louisiana-Lafayette offensive lineman Andre Huval (junior, 3.52 in business).

 Shaughnessy and Lamar punter Kollin Kahler represented the Southland Conference in earning Academic All-District honors. Kahler was chosen for the District 7 team.

 The other seven kickers to advance to the Academic All-America ballot were Fordham’s Patrick Murray (3.6 in finance), Monmouth’s Eric Spillane (3.8 in criminal justice), Sam Eberwein of Campbell (4.0 as a graduate student in pharmacy and pursuing an MBA), Florida State’s Dustin Hopkins (3.7 as a graduate student in international affairs), Jeremiah Detmer of Toledo (3.6 in education), Texas Tech’s Kramer Fyfe (3.7 in mechanical engineering), and John Bonano of Arizona (3.9 in physiology). Three of the eight on the ballot will earn Academic All-America honors announced in a few weeks.

Northwestern had two Academic All-Americans last year, senior tight end Justin Aldredge (first team) and senior linebacker Yaser Elqutub (second team). NSU has had 15 Academic All-America awards won by student-athletes since 1986.

 The Demon kicker has made 12 of 15 field goals this season, and 26 of his last 31 dating back to the start of last season, including a school-record 12 consecutive ending 2011 when he won first-team All-Southland Conference recognition along with Academic All-Southland honors for the second consecutive year.

 Shaughnessy has been very reliable from distance. He’s made 12 of his last 14 from 40 yards and beyond, going 14-22 in his career, including 7 of 9 this year.

 This season, Shaughnessy has kicked three of the four longest of his career this season, going 47, 47 and 46 yards.

 He was the Southland Special Teams player of the week two weeks ago.

when he knocked through a pair of 42-yard field goals in the fourth quarter to bring NSU from behind for a 27-26 homecoming victory over Nicholls State.

 

In a summer internship at LSU Health Sciences Center in Shreveport, Shaughnessy did cancer research through the Louisiana Biomedical Research Network. He presented findings to a panel including medical school faculty from LSU and Tulane.

 

Shaughnessy has also taken a mission trip for Haitian earthquake relief.

 

He was NSU’s 2012 National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete nominee, one of 147 semifinalists from all levels of college football (35 in the FCS). He was not among the 16 winners selected.

 

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