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Beau Knows Award

Dec. 4, 2007

LAS VEGAS - UNLV senior linebacker and co-captain Beau Bell (Tustin, CA) was named the Mountain West Defensive Player of the Year as the league announced its official postseason awards on Tuesday.

Bell, who was also named First Team All-MWC, is the fourth Rebel in history to earn a league's player of the award on defense, joining two-time winner Jamaal Brimmer (2002, '03/media only), Kevin Thomas (2001) and Aaron Moog (1984). Bell is also the first UNLV linebacker to earn such an honor.

"It's a big deal being named the player of the year for this conference because the coaches vote along with the media," said Bell. "We worked hard all year as a team and this is a great way to wrap up my college career. Despite our final record I had a lot of fun playing with these guys and will never forget my senior year as a Rebel."

Bell, who leaves UNLV as its second-leading career tackler with 320, became the first player in league history to be named MWC Defensive Player of the Week three times in one season. He turned in the sixth-most tackles in school history with 126 as a senior, which leads the MWC and ranks 20th in the nation. He also stands 11th nationally with 6.58 solo tackles per game.

Not just a tackling machine, however, Bell was a playmaker all over the field, tying for fourth in the nation with five forced fumbles and ranking fifth in the MWC with a team-leading four interceptions, including one returned for a touchdown at Wyoming. He also led his team with 9.5 tackles for loss, ranked second with three QB sacks and third on the squad with three pass breakups. The fourth player in UNLV history to be invited to play in the Senior Bowl, Bell had eight double-digit tackle games, including a season-high 15 (11 solo) at New Mexico to close his illustrious college career.

"Beau Bell made a decision in the spring and summer to be a great player and he went out and made that a reality in the fall," said UNLV head coach Mike Sanford. "He gave us both great performance and leadership and will leave that legacy for the future of this program."



Joining Bell on the all-league teams was senior cornerback Mil'Von James (Los Angeles, CA), who was voted Second Team All-MWC after leading the nation in pass breakups with 19. The former UCLA transfer had 45 total tackles, including 29 solo, two forced fumbles and one interception in leading a defensive secondary that ranks 23rd nationally in passing yards allowed with 203 per game.

Also, a trio of Rebel standouts earned honorable mention: sophomore WR Ryan Wolfe (Santa Clarita, CA), junior running back Frank "The Tank" Summers (Oakland, CA) and freshman OL Matt Murphy (Lake Forest, CA). Wolfe led UNLV with 66 receptions for 784 yards and two touchdowns. Summers, who finished with 928 rushing yards, became the first Rebel in history to outright lead the team in both rushing TDs (six) and receiving TDs (four) in the same season. Murphy was a rare true freshman starter at left tackle who consistently graded out among the highest among Rebel blockers.

The MWC awards were voted on by the nine head coaches and a panel of 16 members of the media. Air Force RB/WR Chad Hall was named MWC Offensive Player of the Year, BYU RB Harvey Unga was named the league's Freshman of the Year and Air Force's Troy Calhoun was voted Coach of the Year.


PLAYER, POS YEAR(S) (CONFERENCE) Beau Bell, LB 2007 (MWC) Jamaal Brimmer, DB 2002, '03* (MWC) Kevin Thomas, DB 2001 (MWC) Aaron Moog, DL 1984 (PCAA) *Media's selection and consensus choice nationally

Offensive Player of the Year
Chad Hall, Sr., RB/WR, Air Force

Defensive Player of the Year Beau Bell, Sr., LB, UNLV

Freshman of the Year Harvey Unga, RB, BYU

Coach of the Year Troy Calhoun, Air Force

2007 ALL-MOUNTAIN WEST CONFERENCE FIRST TEAM Offense POS PLAYER CL SCHOOL QB Max Hall So. BYU WR Travis Brown Sr. New Mexico WR Marcus Smith Sr. New Mexico RB Chad Hall Sr. Air Force RB Rodney Ferguson Jr. New Mexico TE Dennis Pitta So. BYU OL Blaine Guenther Sr. Air Force OL Ray Feinga Jr. BYU OL Dallas Reynolds Jr. BYU OL Devin Clark Sr. New Mexico OL Vince Natali Sr. New Mexico PK John Sullivan Sr. New Mexico PR/KR Brian Bonner Sr. TCU

Defense POS PLAYER CL SCHOOL DL Jan Jorgensen So. BYU DL Tyler Donaldson Sr. New Mexico DL Chase Ortiz Sr. TCU DL Martail Burnett Sr. Utah LB Jon Rabold Sr. Air Force LB Bryan Kehl Sr. BYU LB Beau Bell Sr. UNLV DB Carson Bird Sr. Air Force DB DeAndre Wright Jr. New Mexico DB Steve Tate Sr. Utah DB Julius Stinson Sr. Wyoming P Louie Sakoda Jr. Utah

SECOND TEAM Offense POS PLAYER CL SCHOOL QB Kevin O'Connell Sr. San Diego State WR Austin Collie So. BYU WR Brett Swain Sr. San Diego State RB Harvey Unga Fr. BYU RB Darrell Mack Jr. Utah TE Wade Betschart Sr. Wyoming OL Nick Charles So. Air Force OL Nick Allotta Sr. Colorado State OL Blake Schlueter Jr. TCU OL Zane Beadles So. Utah OL Robert Conley Jr. Utah PK Louie Sakoda Sr. Utah PR/KR Derrek Richards Sr. Utah

Defense POS PLAYER CL SCHOOL DL Jesse Nading Sr. Colorado State DL Michael Tuohy Sr. New Mexico DL Gabe Long Sr. Utah DL John Fletcher So. Wyoming LB Drew Fowler Sr. Air Force LB Kelly Poppinga Sr. BYU LB Jason Phillips Jr. TCU DB Stephen Hodge Jr. TCU DB David Roach Sr. TCU DB Mil'Von James Sr. UNLV DB Brice McCain Jr. Utah P Michael Hughes Sr. San Diego State

ALL-MOUNTAIN WEST FOOTBALL HONORABLE MENTION Air Force: Shaun Carney, Sr., QB; Travis Dekker, Jr., TE; Ryan Kemp, Jr., DL; Chris Thomas, So., DB. BYU: Austin Collie, So., KR; Quinn Gooch, Sr., DB. Colorado State: Jeff Horinek, Jr., LB; Gartrell Johnson, Jr., RB; Jimmie Kaylor, Sr., P; Damon Morton, Sr., WR; Eric Sandie, Sr., DL; LB; Darryl Williams, Sr., DB. New Mexico: Glover Quin, Jr., DB; Jordan Scott, Sr., P; O.J. Swift, Sr., DB. San Diego State: Russell Allen, Jr., LB; Ray Bass, Sr., DB; Mike Kravtez, Sr., OL; Nick Osborn, Sr., DL; Will Robinson, Sr., OL. TCU: Robert Henson, Jr., LB; Chris Manfredini, Sr., PK; Marshall Newhouse, So., OL; Rafael Priest, So., DB; Derek Wash, Sr., P. UNLV: Matt Murphy, Fr., OL; Frank Summers, Jr., RB; Ryan Wolfe, So., WR. Utah: Robert Johnson, So., DB; Paul Kruger, Fr., DL; Derrek Richards, Sr., WR; Stevenson Sylvester, So., LB. Wyoming: Ward Dobbs, Jr., LB; Kyle Howard, Jr., OL; Mitch Unrein, So., DL; Billy Vinnedge, Sr., P.

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