WILLIAMSBURG — The preseason honors continue to roll in for a number of William & Mary football standouts, as four Tribe players were selected to The Bluebloods Preseason All-America Team.
Linebacker John Pius garnered first-team accolades, while defensive end Nate Lynn and left tackle Charles Grant were named to the second team. Running back Bronson Yoder earned third-team distinction.
Honored as an All-American by seven organizations last year, Pius was voted as the runner up for the 2022 Stats Perform Buck Buchanan Award, which honors the national defensive player of the year in the FCS. Additionally, he was selected as the Colonial Athletic Association Defensive Player of the Year and the Virginia Defensive Player of the Year by VaSID.
En route to garnering the accolades, Pius ranked fourth nationally in sacks (11.5) and fifth in TFL (19). A two-time CAA Defensive Player of the Week, the Arlington, Va., native led W&M in tackles (72) and quarterback hurries (12).
One of the country’s top defensive ends throughout his career, Lynn earned postseason All-America honors following each of the last two seasons and finished ninth in the final voting for the 2021 Buck Buchanan Award. Few, if any, players have matched Lynn’s productivity during the last two seasons, totaling 20 sacks, 26.5 TFL and 10 forced fumbles.
Grant enters the upcoming season as the No. 5 graded offensive lineman in the FCS after a breakout 2022 campaign in which he started all 13 games at left tackle and earned All-America Sophomore Team honors. A first-team All-CAA selection who did not allow any sacks, he helped W&M rank third nationally in rushing (265.8) and fourth in fewest sacks allowed per game (0.77).
An All-CAA selection each of the last two seasons, Yoder garnered first-team all-conference accolades last fall after ranking 12th nationally with 1,255 rushing yards, a figure that ranks eighth on W&M’s single-season list. Additionally, he ranked 14th nationally in rushing touchdowns (13), 16th in rushing yards per game (104.6), 19th in yards per carry (6.18) and 25th in all-purpose yards per game (158.6).
Ranked among the top 10 nationally in multiple preseason polls, W&M is coming off a historic 2022 campaign in which it equaled a school record with 11 victories, advanced to the NCAA Quarterfinals and won a share of the CAA title.
Led by 2022 Eddie Robinson National Coach of the Year Finalist Mike London, the Tribe will return a host of talent on both sides of the ball this fall as it looks to defend its CAA title and make a return to the NCAA Playoffs. Tickets are on sale and available at TribeAthletics.com.
The Tribe will open its 2023 slate at Campbell on Thursday, Aug. 31, while its home opener at Zable Stadium against Wofford will be the following weekend (Sept. 9).