Wednesday, December 15, 2010

UMD's Kiel Fechtelkotter, Isaac Odim, D.J. Winfield Honored as All-Americans

UMD's football team continues to battle through adversity. With superstar players missing from two key offensive positions, and a starter from another, the Bulldogs beat Northwest Missouri State 17-13 Saturday at Malosky Stadium to move into the NCAA Division II Championship for the second time in three years.

The Bulldogs fly to Alabama Wednesday night, and they play Delta State (Cleveland, Miss.) Saturday morning for the title.

In the meantime, UMD players continue to rake in the honors. Here's the latest from UMD:

Kiel Fechtelkotter, who has captained the University of Minnesota Duluth to a berth in the NCAA II national championship game while anchoring one of the most robust defenses in the country, has been chosen to the 2010 Daktronics All-America first team while a pair of Bulldogs -- senior running back Isaac Odim and junior wide out/return specialist D.J. Winfield landed second team honors.

Fechtelkotter, a third-year starting inside linebacker from Lake Nebagamon, Wis., currently tops UMD in total tackles with a career-high 92 stops, which includes four quarterback sacks. The two-time All-Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference North Division pick also ranks first among Bulldogs with six pass breakups. He is the 15th Bulldog to ever attain first team All-American recognition of any kind.

With his selection to the Daktronics honor squad, Odim becomes UMD's first three-time All-American. The Rochester, Minn., product suffered a season-ending knee injury back on Oct. 14, but still managed to score 19 touchdowns (17 on the ground) and rush for 796 yards in six games. Winfield, who was suspended indefinitely for violating team rules prior to UMD's quarterfinal round playoff clash with Augustana College a couple of weeks ago, tops the 2010 Bulldog reception charts with 45 catches for 990 yards and eight touchdowns.

Amazingly, Odim was able to become a three-time All-American despite missing half the season with a knee injury. As noted in the UMD info, Winfield is out because of a violation of team rules, and will not play Saturday, either.

Throw in senior receiver Noah Pauley's injury, and you have a banged-up offense, but that's nothing new. UMD's been playing short-handed for a good chunk of the season. All it's done is allow guys like Chase Vogler, Brad Foss, and Brian Hanson to step up. And they've stepped up. That's why UMD's in this game.

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