WKU Football: Defensive lineman Juwuan Jones named to Freshman All-American Team

Recorded five sacks in debut season on the Hill

SAN JOSE, Calif. — WKU Football defensive end Juwuan Jones has been named a 2018 Freshman All-American, the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) announced Monday morning prior to the evening’s College Football Playoff (CFP) National Championship Game.

He is believed to be the first freshman defensive lineman in program history to earn All-American honors.

After redshirting the 2017 campaign to make the switch from high school linebacker to collegiate defensive end, Jones’ five sacks in 2018 set a WKU FBS Era record (dating back to 2009) by a freshman. He made a career-high 2.5 sacks with a forced fumble vs. Old Dominion on October 20, which was the most sacks in a game by a Hilltopper since the 2016 Boca Raton Bowl.

The Sugar Hill, Ga., native earned a spot on the Conference USA All-Freshman Team, and was also the lone freshman defender to be voted All-CUSA Honorable Mention, both of which were announced on Dec. 4. His five sacks and 546 total snaps led all C-USA freshman defenders.

Jones becomes the Hilltoppers’ third FWAA Freshman All-American since the program moved to the FBS, joining offensive lineman Brandon Ray in 2014 and kick returner Willie McNeal in 2010. The most recent WKU defensive lineman to earn any type of All-American status was Quanterus Smith, whose 2012 season garnered Phil Steele Fourth Team and Sports Illustrated Honorable Mention honors.

He joins Louisiana Tech’s Jaylon Ferguson as the only C-USA defensive linemen to be listed since the FWAA began announcing Freshman All-American Teams in 2001. Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence was the only other Peach Stater on the 2018 Freshman All-American Team.

Founded in 1941, the FWAA consists of 1,400 men and women who cover college football. The membership includes journalists, broadcasters and publicists, as well as key executives in all the areas that involve the game. The FWAA works to govern areas that include game-day operations, major awards and its annual All-America team.

A 13-man panel of nationally prominent college football experts represented each of the FBS conferences, along with independents in the selecting the 32-man team. Both true freshmen (18 players) and redshirt freshmen (14 players) were considered.

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