UVA football player Quin Blanding earned his seventh Freshman All-America honor when the Football Writers Association of America (FWAA) included the safety on its postseason list today. Blanding is the sixth all-time UVa freshman to be honored on the FWAA’s Freshman All-America team since its inception in 2001 and first since DE Jeffrey Fitzgerald in 2006.
Blanding (Fr., Virginia Beach, Va.) has also been named a Freshman All-American by ESPN.com, Sporting News, USA Today, Scout.com, Phil Steele and 247Sports. Scout.com also named Blanding its National Defensive Rookie of the Year.
Blanding has piled up postseason accolades after finishing the regular season No. 2 in the ACC and No. 17 in the nation with 10.3 tackles per game (123 tackles). In addition to being Scout.com’s National Defensive Rookie of the Year, Blanding earned defensive rookie of the year honors from both the ACC media and the ACC coaches. Both the ACC media and the ACC coaches included Blanding on their All-ACC second teams.
Blanding finished his rookie campaign tied with Jamie Sharper (1996) for No. 10 in the UVa record book for tackles in a season and the 123 stops is the most tackles by a Cavalier in a season since Angelo Crowell had 155 in 2002. Blanding is one of two freshmen in the nation to lead his team in tackles (NC State’s Jerod Fernandez, 76) and he also led UVa with 79 tackles on rushing plays for the nation’s No. 21 rush defense (120.7 per game). Blanding also set UVa’s record for tackles by a freshman, passing Ahmad Brooks’ 2003 total of 117 stops.
Clemson cornerback Mackensie Alexander joins Blanding as the only ACC players on the FWAA Freshman All-American list.