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Football Distributes Team Awards
By: Kevin Meinholz, Sports Information Director
EAU CLAIRE, Wis. - UW-Eau Claire head football coach Todd Glaser announced the 2009 team award winners at the team's end-of-season banquet recently.
Leis, who earned Defensive MVP recognition while playing at outside linebacker, led the Blugolds in tackles with 63 (40 solo, 23 assists). He had four sacks, which ranked second best on the team and 10th best in the WIAC. Leis was a second team All-WIAC selection this year while he was honorably mentioned in 2008.
Paulson won MVP honors on the offensive side playing quarterback. A second team All-WIAC selection this year, Paulson had 2,622 overall passing yards and completed 213 passes on 337 attempts with just eight interceptions while he was second on the team in rushing with 311 total yards. He finished his career second on the Blugolds' all-time career pass attempts list (968), second in completions (558), tied for second in passing touchdowns (47), third in passing yards (6,377) and total yards (7,163).
On special teams, O'Connell was selected as the MVP. O'Connell had 15 kick returns and accumulated 388 yards for a team-best 25.9 yards per return. He also finished with 145 receiving yards and was fifth on the team with 533 all-purpose yards.
Kyle Thorpe (Fr.-Stanley, Wis./Stanley-Boyd/Moorhead St.), Jake Holterman (Fr.-Muskego, Wis.), Austin Murphy (Fr.-Rhinelander, Wis./Rhinelander ) and Austin Neu (Fr.-Iron Ridge, Wis./Hustisford) earned newcomer of the year awards.
Thorpe was selected on defense. A safety, he finished with 23 tackles (19 solos, four assists) and had a team-high two interceptions.
Holterman earned honors on offense. He played in all 10 games on the offensive line, starting all but the first game of the season.
Neu and Murphy shared recognition on the special teams. Neu punted 26 times, playing in the final six games of the year, for 940 yards, an average of 36.2 yards per kick. Murphy played in the last five games of the season and helped defend on kickoffs and punts. He finished with four tackles on the season.