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Pitt

Pitt: Sheard Named AFCA All-American

Pitt defensive tackle Jabaal Sheard

Rutgers offensive linesman Desmond Stapleton (73) is injured as he is sandwiched between Pittsburgh defensive tackle Jabaal Sheard (97) and defensive tackle Brandon Lindsey (35) as Rutgers quarterback Chas Dodd (19) is sacked in the second quarter of an NCAA college football game, Saturday, Oct. 23, 2010 in Pittsburgh. Stapleton was helped from the field. Pitt won 41-21.(AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)

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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – For the fourth time in the last five years, a Panthers player has earned All-American status.

The American Football Coaches Association named senior defensive end Jabaal Sheard to its All-America Team on Monday.

Sheard joins the ranks of previous Pitt All-Americans, including: Dorin Dickerson, Scott McKillop and H.B. Blades.

Shead said he is “humbled and appreciative” to receive the honor, but he was quick to point out that his success has been a team effort.

“While it is my name on the award,” Sheard said in a statement, “this really is about my teammates and coaches. They have helped me become the person and player I am today. I will always be indebted to them.”

Read the full press release from Pitt below:
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Jabaal Sheard Named to AFCA All-America Team
Nov. 29, 2010

PITTSBURGH (PittsburghPanthers.com) – University of Pittsburgh senior defensive end Jabaal Sheard has been named to the 25-player All-America Team selected by the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA), the organization announced today.

Sheard becomes the fourth Pitt player under coach Dave Wannstedt to earn first-team All-America accolades. Wannstedt’s previous honorees include tight end Dorin Dickerson (2009), linebacker Scott McKillop (2008) and linebacker H.B. Blades (2006) — all current players in the National Football League.

The AFCA has selected an All-America team since 1945. It is the only All-America team chosen exclusively by college football’s head coaches.

The 6-foot-4, 260-pound Sheard (Hollywood Hills, Fla./Hollywood Hills) is one of the country’s most productive defenders this year, regardless of position. Despite being the constant focus of opponents’ blocking schemes, he has compiled 45 tackles, 12.5 tackles for loss, 9.0 sacks, four forced fumbles and one fumble recovery.

Sheard leads the Big East in forced fumbles (0.36 forced fumbles/game), ranks second in tackles for loss (1.14 TFLs/game) and is third in sacks (0.82 sacks/game). Nationally, he ranks fifth in forced fumbles (tied) and 15th in sacks.

Sheard has forced teams to game plan around him without having the benefit of preseason All-America end Greg Romeus on the opposite side as Romeus missed all but two games this year due to injury. According to Pitt coaching staff calculations, Sheard has faced double teams 70% of all passing downs this year.

“We are all incredibly proud that Jabaal has received this prestigious honor,” Wannstedt said. “From the first snap of training camp to his final game, he has been just exceptional. Jabaal is very deserving of joining the All-America tradition we have at Pitt.”

“I am very humbled and appreciative to receive this honor from the American Football Coaches Association,” Sheard said. “While it is my name on the award, this really is about my teammates and coaches. They have helped me become the person and player I am today. I will always be indebted to them.”

Sheard’s honor marks the 88th first-team All-America citation in Pitt football history.

For more Pitt news, visit PittsburghPanthers.com, the official athletic website of the University of Pittsburgh

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