Grinnell, IA – Led by a three-year First Team pick and a four-time honoree, the Beloit College Football team placed five players on the 2016 All-Midwest Conference Football team, released today by the Conference office.
Senior wide receiver Mike Nolden earned his third straight First Team selection, the first Buccaneer Football player to be so honored since linebacker Tony Baratti from 2008-10. Senior running back Mason Dixon was recognized for the fourth time in earning First-Team honors for the first time, the first four-time honoree since Baratti. Sophomore offensive lineman Jake Karlicek was named to the Second Team for the second straight year while senior quarterback Danny May and senior defensive lineman Riley Pearson both earned their first recognitions with Second Team honors.
Nolden, from Belleville, Wisconsin, led the team in receiving with 60 catches for 889 yards and nine touchdowns. The nine touchdown receptions were the second-most in the MWC and are the third-most in a season in Beloit history while the 60 catches are tied for the fourth-most in a season at Beloit and the 889 yards receiving were fifth-most in a season. For his career he finished as the all-time leader in receptions (193) and receiving TDs (30), was second in receiving yards (2,605) and fourth in all-purpose yardage (3,464). In his career he had eight 100-yard receiving games and two games with three touchdown catches, which ties for the most ever for the Bucs.
Dixon, from Walworth, Wisconsin (Big Foot), was a Second Team All-MWC selection the last two seasons and an Honorable Mention pick in his first season. He battled through an injury-plagued final season as the team leader with 172 rushes for 848 yards and eight touchdowns. He also caught 11 passes for 80 yards. For his career he finished second in Beloit history in rushing attempts (863), rushing yards (4,511), touchdowns (39) and yards per season (1,128). He recorded 27 100-yard rushing games in his career, including six this past season.
Karlicek, from Hickory Hills, Illinois (St. Laurence) helped anchor the offensive line for the second season. The Buccaneers averaged over 422 yards per game in offense with just under 200 yards per game rushing and 226 thru the air. The offense averaged a Beloit record 6.1 yards per play.
May, from Maitland, Florida (Bishop Moore) had a second straight 2,000-yard passing season, just the third Buccaneer quarterback to record two such seasons. He finished 174-269 thru the air, breaking his own season record with a 64.7% passing percentage, for 2,079 yards and 17 touchdowns. He also rushed for 608 yards and five TDs, giving him an average of just under 269 yards per game in total offense. His 22 total touchdowns passing and rushing were more than half of the team total. In just two seasons, he ended his career first in passing percentage (63.8%), second in pass completions (350) and fourth in both passing yards (4,167) and touchdowns (34).
Pearson, from Beloit (Orfordville Parkview), was second on the team in tackles with 71, 36 of them solo. He led the team in sacks with 7.0 for 44 yards and tackles for loss with 12.5 for 58 yards. He also had a forced and a recovered fumble and blocked a kick. He finished his career with 262 tackles, 16.0 sacks and 31.0 tackles for loss.
The Bucs closed 2016 3-7 overall, 2-6 in MWC play.