Dec. 14, 2011
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. --- University of New Mexico freshman wide receiver Deon Long made the Phil Steele Postseason All-Freshman second team on Wednesday.
The publication also announced Long and senior middle linebacker Carmen Messina as first-team all-Mountain West honorees.
Long, who missed two games and played sparingly in two others because of injuries, led the Lobos with 809 receiving yards and four receiving touchdowns in 2011. He tied junior Ty Kirk for the team lead with 47 receptions.
The West Virginia transfer set Mountain West and UNM single-game records for all-purpose yards with his 378-yard performance against Sam Houston State on Sept. 24. Long had 209 receiving yards -- the highest in the MW this season -- and three TDs on nine receptions. He also had 165 yards on kickoff returns, including a 98-yarder for a score during the first play of the game. Long added 2 rushing and 2 punt return yards.
The 378-yard effort ranked second in the Football Bowl Subdivision this season.
Messina led the Mountain West with 142 tackles this season, marking the third straight season he led the league in stops. He set a conference record with 454 career tackles and had a career-high 21 in the 2011 season finale at Boise State.
Phil Steele named a trio of Lobos to its all-Mountain West third team: Kirk (47 catches, 376 yards); senior defensive end Jaymar Latchison (45 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss, two sacks, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery); and senior wolf safety Bubba Forrest (85 tackles, two tackles for loss, two pass breakups, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery.