KALAMAZOO, Mich. - Western Michigan football boasts three student-athletes on the 2008 NationalChamps.Net (College Football Online) Preseason All-America Team. Londen Fryar (DB), Jamarko Simmons (WR) and Brandon West (KR) all received honorable mention for the award.
Londen Fryar (Jobbstown, N.J./Holy Cross HS) is one of two Broncos to have back-to-back All-MAC selections over the past two seasons and is receiving his second First Team nod in as many campaigns as a defensive back. The converted wide receiver, who made the change prior to the 2006 season, led the Broncos with 16 pass deflections. That total ranks second in a single-season at WMU and ranked second in the conference this year.
Fryar recorded his sixth career interception against Toledo and at one point during the Akron game broke up three-straight pass attempts deep in the red zone to force the Zips to turn the ball over on downs.
Jamarko Simmons (Flint, Mich./Central HS) broke out in 2007 with the second most receptions in a season (84) and 980 yards receiving, which is his the seventh best single-season performance in program history. Simmons opened the campaign with a pair of 14-catch games against West Virginia and Indiana and had four double-digit reception games as a junior.
He matched a career-high with 172 yards on 10 catches against Akron and had four 100-yard receiving games this year. He is also just two catches from cracking the top four on the career list.
Brandon West (Brunswick, Ga./Camden County HS) had a special season as a sophomore, leading the Broncos with 848 yards rushing and capturing a pair of WMU single-season records. West, the only Bronco to earn Second Team All-MAC (Offense and Kick Return Specialist) in two separate categories, broke Rashad McDade’s mark of 898 kick return yards, finishing with 906. He also snapped the 24-year old mark of Shawn Faulkner (1,889) with 2,119 all-purpose yards.
His season was highlighted by amassing 346 all-purpose yards against Indiana, including a 98-yard kick return for a score, to break both the Western Michigan and MAC single-game record. West had three 100-yard rushing efforts in 2007, including a career-best 171 yards on 21 carries against Ball State. He is just 1,588 all-purpose yards from becoming the career leader, surpassing Greg Jennings' 5,050. West is currently averaging 1,731.5 all-purpose yards per season.
Western Michigan opens fall camp on Monday, Aug. 4 in preparation for its 2008 season opener at Nebraska on Aug. 30. WMU's first home game will be the following week on Sept. 6 when the Broncos welcome Northern Illinois on CommUniverCity Night.