Special to the News-Telegram
DENTON – After a 9-4 inaugural season in Conference USA in 2013, capped off by a bowl victory, the North Texas football team has placed 10 players on Phil Steele’s Preseason All-CUSA Team.
Players honored were Sulphur Springs graduates Mason Y’Barbo, a 6-2, 307-pound lineman and punter Blake Macek, a 5-9. 186-pound redshirt sophomore.
The Mean Green offensive line leads the way with a league-high four players on the first, second or third team. The Mean Green offensive line has allowed only 17 sacks over the last two seasons, the fewest in the nation.
Three-time all-conference selection Cyril Lemon and Y’Barbo were named to the first-team, Antonio Johnson to the second-team and Kaydon Kirby to the third-team. Y’Barbo was a second-team All-C-USA pick in 2013 and Kirby was named to the all-freshman team.
On defense linebacker Derek Akunne was named to the first-team while Kenny Buyers, Lairamie Lee and Anthony Wallace were picked third team. Akunne is the leading tackler returning on a defense that allowed the eighth fewest points in the nation in 2013.
Running back Antoinne Jimmerson was a fourth-team selection as was punter Macek.
Macek was named to the C-USA All-Freshman team in 2013.
Phil Steele’s College Football Preview edition hits the newsstands on June 24.
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