Dec. 11, 2013
HOUSTON - Seven student-athletes from the Houston Football program earned recognition from The American Athletic Conference's coaches as the league's honors were announced Wednesday. Sophomore WR Deontay Greenberry and freshman KR Demarcus Ayers were named to the league's first team while Ayers was named The American's Co-Special Teams Player of the Year and freshman QB John O'Korn took home Rookie of the Year honors.
The program's Andre Ware Offensive MVP, Greenberry led the league with an average of 100.5 receiving yards per game despite leaving one game early in the first quarter and missing Houston's regular-season finale vs. SMU. Greenberry's 10 touchdown receptions ranked second in the league while his 76 receptions ranked third in conference.
In his first year on the collegiate level, Ayers led the league with an average kick return of 26.8 yards and 884 total kick return yards. The Lancaster, Texas, native set the UH freshman single-season record with his 884 yards and currently ranks fourth on the single-season chart regardless of class. He had a 95-yard touchdown return vs. BYU and is second nationally with 10 returns of 30 yards or longer. Ayers also added nine receptions for 116 yards and one touchdown at receiver.
The American's Rookie of the Year, O'Korn led all true freshmen nationally with 26 passing touchdowns and was fourth in the league overall with 2,889 passing yards while starting 10 of 12 games this season. He also added 66 yards on the ground including a 24-yard rushing TD at UCF. His 26 touchdowns and 239 completions set Houston freshman records and he currently ranks second on the freshman passing yards chart, needing 242 yards to capture the record.
Houston's starting left tackle, Sims earned second-team honors in a season that saw the senior play a total of 899 offensive snaps with 36 knockdown blocks. Sims was a part of an offense that ranks second in The American in scoring at 33.9 points per game and third in the league with 25 sacks allowed.
The nation's leader in takeaways with 10, Stewart leads the nation and set a Houston single-season record with his six fumble recoveries. A FWAA Freshman All-American in 2012, the sophomore is tied for third in the league with four interceptions on the year. The Patterson, La., native also has 99 tackles on the year to go along with five pass breakups and two forced fumbles.
McMillian earned second-team honors at cornerback after tying for third in the league with four interceptions and breaking up six passes. The senior from Missouri City also collected 53 tackles while forcing one fumble.
A Ray Guy Award semifinalist for the third straight year, Leone took home second-team honors by placing 52.4 percent of his punts inside his opponents' 20-yard line and 22.2 percent inside the 10, both league bests. Leone finished the regular season with an average of 43.1 yards per punt on 63 punts including 14 over 50 yards and four over 60. Just three of Leone's 63 punts resulted in a touchback with opponents calling for a fair catch 14 times. With Leone's leg, the Houston punt team ranks third nationally and leads The American with a net punting average of 41.3 yards per punt.
Houston fans can purchase BBVA Compass Bowl tickets for just $50 here.
For more information on BBVA Compass Bowl tickets, fans can call 713-GO-COOGS (462-6647) or 877-COUGAR-5 (268-4275) or visit the Athletics Ticket Office, located on the first floor of the Athletics/Alumni Center from 8 a.m., to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
Fans students can purchase travel packages for the BBVA Compass Bowl as well through the University of Houston Alumni Association. Those travel packages can be found here.
Travel packages may include hotel accommodations at an official Houston hotel, ground transportation to and from the game and other package events, admission to official Houston bowl events, bowl game eve reception, pregame tailgate party, BBVA Compass Bowl ticket and more!
University of Houston students can purchase packages to the BBVA Compass Bowl with a $50 package including transportation to Birmingham, lodging and a game ticket, and a $25 package including a game ticket. Both packages include access to a pregame tailgate party and a gift.
More information can be found here.