BOONEVILLE, Miss. (WTVA/NEMCC Athletics) – Northeast Mississippi Community College’s football team produced two NJCAA All-Americans this season.
Sophomore punter Jonathan Harrison (6'6", 195 lbs) of Belmont and sophomore defensive lineman Lavon Hooks (6'4", 290 lbs) of Atlanta, Georgia were named NJCAA All-Americans on Wednesday.
Harrison was named a first-team All-American on the defensive side of the ball while Hooks drew an honorable mention selection from the NJCAA.
Harrison becomes Northeast’s first first-team All-American selection for football since Jerry King earned the honor in 1956. Harrison and Hooks are Northeast’s 11th and 12th All-Americans in football.
During his sophomore year in Booneville, Harrison ended up tops in the nation with a 41.48 yards per punt average while appearing in all nine games for the Tigers. Harrison had 48 punts for the Tigers during the season and pinned the opposition deep within its own territory, finishing fifth in the nation for punts inside the 20-yard line.
Harrison led the nation for most of the year in yards per punt average and finished first in the nation in touchbacks.
Harrison’s long on the year came when the sophomore blasted a 60-yard boot against Holmes Community College during the third week of the season.
Hooks was honored as the Most Valuable Defensive Lineman in the Mississippi Association of Community/Junior Colleges (MACJC).
Hooks was tied for second in the MACJC and NJCAA Region XXIII in sacks the 2012 season when the Atlanta native finished with 9.5 sacks for the Tigers.
On the year, Hooks tallied 51 tackles – 18 solo stops and 33 assists. Hooks' 6.4 tackles per game were second on the Tiger roster.
Hooks came away with three fumble recoveries and three forced fumbles for the Tigers. His 20.5 tackles for loss on the year saw the Northeast sophomore finish second in the nation in the category.
With the selection, Northeast’s football team has its first team since the 1980 team to have two NJCAA All-Americans selected in the same year. During the 1980 season, Kossuth’s Paul Rhodes and Morrow, Georgia’s Anthony Norman were both selected as All-Americans.
Hooks and Harrison’s selections also mark the third year in a row that the Northeast football team has produced an All-American. During the 2010 season, offensive lineman Antonio Foster from Valdosta, Georgia was selected as an honorable mention while 2011 saw Tuscumbia, Alabama’s Deion Belue honored with honorable mention status.