Rams land three players on All-Mountain West football teams and three honorable mentions
Dec. 4, 2012
FORT COLLINS, Colo. - The Colorado State Rams landed three players on the 2012 All-Mountain West football teams, announced Tuesday, and three more received honorable mention. Senior punter Pete Kontodiakos was the Rams' lone first-team selection, while sophomore kicker Jared Roberts and graduate student defensive end Lanston Tanyi earned second-team honors.
A trio of juniors earned honorable mention recognition: linebacker Shaquil Barrett, cornerback Shaq Bell and center Weston Richburg.
For Kontodiakos it was the third All-Mountain West honor in a row--a first for a Colorado State punter--and his first time earning first-team status after second-team plaudits in 2010 and '11. He is the 17th Colorado State player to earn three or more all-conference honors, and the first since tight end Joel Dreessen (2002-04). Only two Rams--safety Greg Myers (1992-95) and Steve Bartalo (1983-86) have been named all-conference all four years.
Roberts and Tanyi each were honored for the first time, in their initial season of play as Rams.
Richburg was a member of the second team in 2011. Barrett earned honorable mention for the second year in a row, while Bell was recognized in that category for the first time.
One of the most accomplished punters in school history, Kontodiakos broke Colorado State's single-season record for punting average in 2012 with a 46.5-yard average on a career-high 59 punts. He booted 19 of his punts 50 or more yards, and placed a career-high 19 punts inside the 20-yard line.
Kontodiakos was named Mountain West Special Teams Player of the Week against Hawaii on Oct. 27 for setting a conference record with an average of 61.8 on four punts. He posted the three longest punts in the Mountain West this season (73, 72 and 72 yards) and ranked fourth in the nation in punting average.
Roberts earned a scholarship nine days before the season opener vs. Colorado and proceeded to make nine of his 10 field-goal attempts on the year and 29-of-31 point-after attempts, for a team-leading 56 points. He was 4-4 on field goals between 40-49 yards (47, 48, 48, 49), with his only miss from 51 yards.
Tanyi was honored in his first and only season as a Ram following his transfer from Appalachian State after receiving his undergraduate degree in May 2012. He made 77 tackles (26 solo), most by a Rams defensive lineman since 1995 and second-most by any Mountain West defensive lineman in 2012. In addition, Tanyi's six quarterback hurries were the most by a Colorado State player since 1991. He added three sacks and 3.5 tackles for loss.
Barrett ranked second on the team in sacks (3.5) and tackles for loss (7.5). He made 67 total tackles (33 solo), forced two fumbles and returned an interception 49 yards for his third touchdown in two seasons as a Ram.
Bell moved into the starting lineup early in the season and continued to get better every week. He had four takeaways (3 fumble recoveries and one interception) to go with 66 tackles, two forced fumbles, one sack and three tackles for loss. Against Utah State on Sept. 22 Bell made six tackles, an interception, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery. He was the first Ram to have an interception, forced fumble and fumble recovery in the same game since Nov. 6, 2010 (Mychal Sisson).
Richburg anchored an offensive line that saw five different starting combinations but steadily improved as the season went along. The Rams averaged 163.3 rushing yards per game over the last four contests, up from 96.2 the first six games, and reduced their sacks allowed to 1.7 over the final six games after surrendering 4.3 the first four games.