Dec. 26, 2002
Notre Dame, Ind. – Senior cornerback Shane Walton, center Jeff Faine and linebacker Courtney Watson were all named to The Sporting News 2002 All-America team. Walton and Faine were named to the first team, while Watson was named to the third team.
Walton adds to his already impressive list of awards for the 2002 season. Notre Dame’s first consensus All-American since 1993, Walton has been named to the first team of the Associated Press, Walter Camp, CNNSI.com, American Football Coaches Association and the Football Writers’ Association of America All-America teams. Walton was also Notre Dame’s most valuable player and was one of five finalists for the Bronko Nagurski Award.
Faine earned his second first-team All-America citation in 2002. Faine was also named to the ESPN.com first team, the Associated Press second-team and the CNNSI.com honorable mention squad. Notre Dame’s Nick Pietrosante Award winner, Faine was a finalist for the Rimington Trophy given to the nation’s outstanding center and a semifinalist for the Lombardi Award.
Watson received third-team honors from The Sporting News. Watson was also a first-team selection by ESPN.com, an Associated Press third teamer and a CNNSI.com honorable mention winner. He was named one of three finalists for the Butkus Award given to the nation’s outstanding linebacker and was Notre Dame’s team leader in tackles with 90 in only 10 games.
The Irish also had three players named to the freshman All-America team by The Sporting News, as Brandon Hoyte, Maurice Stovall and Justin Tuck were cited by the magazine. Hoyte, who was an academic all-district selection as well, was named to the second team, while Stovall and Tuck were part of the third-team. Hoyte is currently sixth on the team in tackles with 47, while Tuck is eighth with 38 tackles, including eight for loss. Stovall had 15 catches in 2002 for 287 yards and three touchdowns. Players who are true freshmen or did not see action in their first season are eligible for the team.