Notre Dame Fighting Irish - Official Athletics Website

Shane Walton Named An AFCA All-American

Dec. 5, 2002

Notre Dame, Ind. – Notre Dame senior cornerback/punt returner Shane Walton today was named to the 2002 American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) All-America team. Walton, who on Tuesday became the first Notre Dame football player in 10 years to earn All-America honors from the Football Writers Association of America, is Notre Dame’s first honoree of this award since Bobby Taylor in 1994.

A finalists for the 2002 Bronko Nagurski Trophy given to the best defensive player in college football by the FWAA and the Charlotte Touchdown Club, Walton has been the leader of the Irish defense in 2002. The Irish rank 13th in the country in total defense, seventh in pass efficiency defense, 11th in rushing defense and sixth in scoring defense allowing only 15.75 points a game. The Irish finished the regular season 10-2 and are currently ranked 11th in the country and 10th in the Bowl Championship Series poll.

Walton, who only three years ago was the leading scorer on the Notre Dame men’s soccer team, leads the Irish in interceptions in 2002 with seven. His seven picks rank him sixth in Division I college football and are the most interceptions by a Notre Dame player since Todd Lyght recorded eight during the 1989 season. The fifth-year player recorded three of his interceptions against Maryland in the Kickoff Classic, setting a new Kickoff Classic record and tying the Notre Dame record for interceptions in a game. The native of San Diego, Calif., then earned the FWAA National Defensive Player of the Week Award for his outstanding performance against Michigan back in September. In that game, he knocked down a critical two-point conversion in the final minutes of the game to preserve Notre Dame’s 25-23 lead and then clinched the victory by intercepting a pass with under a minute to go in the contest.

Walton, a four-time captain this season, also set a career-high with nine tackles in Notre Dame’s 35-24 win over Florida State and swatted down three balls. He matched that total against USC with one being a tackle for loss. On the season, Walton is tied for fourth on the team in tackles with 65, including 42 solos. He has five tackles for loss, seven pass breakups, a fumble recovery and a forced fumble on the season.

Walton becomes the 48th player in Notre Dame history named to the AFCA Coaches’ All-American Team. Notre Dame has been represented 55 times by 48 players on the AFCA team, the most in history. The Irish are followed by Oklahoma (48/41), Ohio State (48/36), Michigan (47/42), Nebraska (47/42) and USC (44/39).


QB Ken Dorsey, Miami
RB Larry Johnson, Penn State
RB Chris Brown, Colorado
WR Charles Rogers, Michigan State
WR Nate Burleson, Nevada
TE Dallas Clark, Iowa
OL Shawn Andrews, Arkansas
OL Eric Steinbach, Iowa
OL Brett Williams, Florida State
OL Derrick Roche, Washington State
C Brett Romberg, Miami

DL Tommie Harris, Oklahoma
DL Jerome McDougle, Miami
DL Calvin Pace, Wake Forest
DL Terrell Suggs, Arizona State
LB E.J. Henderson, Maryland
LB Boss Bailey, Georgia
LB Brady James, LSU
DB Mike Doss, Ohio State
DB Terence Newman, Kansas State
DB Brandon Everage, Oklahoma
DB Shane Walton, Notre Dame

K Mike Nugent, Ohio State
P Mark Mariscal, Colorado
RS DeJuan Groce, Nebraska

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