WEST POINT, N.Y. - Army free safety Brandon Fusilier-Jeffires has been named second-team Freshman All-America by Phil Steele Publications. The organization also announced its All-Independent Team, which included 10 Black Knights.
Fusilier-Jeffires started nine of the 11 games he played in at free safety. He finished the season as the Black Knights' second-leading tackler with 88 stops. He made one tackle for loss, intercepted one pass and broke up two passes. Fusilier-Jeffires was the only player from a service academy named to the All-Freshman squad.
First-team picks Raymond Maples (running back), Frank Allen (offensive line), and Geoffery Bacon (linebacker) highlighted Army's 10 All-Independent selections. Maples rushed for 1,215 yards and two touchdowns in 2012, becoming only the third player in Army history to post back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons.
Allen started all 12 games at left guard, helping pave the way for Army's No. 1 ranked rushing offense (369.8) and an Academy record 4,438 rushing yards. Bacon was Army's leading tackler with 136 stops, which ranked ninth on the Black Knights' single-season list. Bacon recorded double-digit tackles in nine of Army's last 10 games.
Army had three second-team players on offense. Senior quarterback Trent Steelman earned his way onto the team after leading the team in rushing with a West Point quarterback record 1,248 yards. His 17 rushing touchdowns tied the Academy season record. Steelman finished his career with a school-record 45 rushing touchdowns. Two of Steelman's blockers were also honored - junior offensive tackle Michael Kime and sophomore offensive guard Stephen Shumaker.
The Black Knights also had three second-team selections on defense. Sophomore defensive tackle Bobby Kough started all 12 games and finished with 42 tackles. His 9.5 tackles for loss ranked second on the team. Senior linebacker Nate Combs racked up 63 total stops, including a team-high 12.0 tackles for loss. His 6.0 quarterback sacks also paced the team. Freshman Alex Meier ended his rookie season with 71 tackles, third best on the team. He also had an interception and recovered to fumbles.
Sophomore kickoff returner Stephen Fraser was included among the special teams choices. Fraser averaged 20.8 yards on 12 kick returns, including Army's longest return of the season (37 yards).