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November 8, 2012

Watts and Zalneraitis now candidates for Academic All-America accolades

WEST POINT, N.Y. - Army senior defensive end Zach Watts and junior defensive lineman Holt Zalneraitis have been selected to the Capital One Academic All-District I Football Team. It is the fourth straight season that Army has had two players selected Academic All-District.

Limited to starters or key reserves with a 3.2 or better grade point average, the 27 All-District I honorees are now eligible for Academic All-America honors.

Watts was a first-team Academic All-America selection in 2011. An engineering management major with a 3.46 GPA, Watts has started all eight games he has played in this season. He ranks sixth on the team with 31 tackles, including 2.0 tackles for loss.

Zalneraitis was honored for the first time. He has been hampered by injury recently, but has started three of the five games he has appeared in. The Round Rock, Texas native has been credited with nine tackles, including one behind the line of scrimmage.

Army has had at least one player selected to the Academic All-District squad in each of the past five seasons, and has produced five Academic All-Americans in that span, including four in the last two seasons. Last year's two first-team selections was a program first since the 1958 season.

With the selection of Watts and Zalneraitis, 24 Army players have now gained district academic honors since 1989. In all, Black Knight players have garnered 33 district citations during that span. The Black Knights have featured at least one representative on the Academic All-America District 1 club in 20 of the last 24 years.

Army is preparing to face Rutgers on Saturday, Nov. 10 at High Point Solutions Stadium in Piscataway, N.J. Kickoff is scheduled for 12 p.m.


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