Understood. App had no SID in those days. I think Jim Jones/students kept team stats [he was business mgr for athletics, head tennis coach and (of course) a much-feared accounting professor then]. Many of the athletic department's collection of official team scoring books were carelessly tossed with construction debris when Broome-Kirk Gym fell to a wrecking bar. I bought a badly damaged one for early 50s men's basketball that was found in a trash pile by a grad student and ended up in a Boone antique mall.AppStFan1 wrote: ↑Thu Feb 18, 2021 1:15 pmI could not find full stats for them for specific years so I did not list them. I am highlighting top single-season performances and not overall career.asu66 wrote: ↑Thu Feb 18, 2021 1:07 pmAppStFan1 wrote: ↑Wed Feb 17, 2021 10:00 pmA comment on another thread had me think on this. Who and what were the top defensive performances in App State history?
I would not rank these in order yet but some of the top ones off the top of my head are these:
2019 LB Akeem Davis-Gaither- 4th round pick, SBC DEF POY, 1st team All-SBC, 104 TKL, 14.5 TFL, 5 sacks, 1 INT, 8 PBU, 6 QBH, 1 BLK.
2015 DE Ronald Blair- 5th round pick, SBC DEF POY, 1st team All-SBC, 71 tkl, 19 TFL, 7.5 sacks, 1 INT, 2 QBH, 1 FR, 1 FF.
2005 DE Jason Hunter- Undrafted, 2nd team All-American, 1st team All-SoCon, 101 TKL, 24.5 TFL, 3 sacks, 1 INT returned for TD, 2 FR for TDs.
1996 LB Dexter Coakley- 3rd round pick, Buck Buchanan Award Winner, 166 tkl (2nd most all-time in a single year), 1st team All-American, SoCon Athlete of Year, SoCon DEF POY, 1st team All-SoCon,
1995 LB Dexter Coakley- 3rd round pick, Buck Buchanan Award Winner, 1st team All-American, SoCon Athlete of Year, SoCon DEF POY, 1st team All-SoCon, 165 tkl, 20 TFL
1985 LB Dino Hackett- 2nd round pick, 1st team All-American, 1st team All-SoCon, 200 tkl (all-time single season high), 27 tkl vs ETSU (all-time single game high)
I felt like since the 80s these have to be the top ones but I think Marques Murrell in 2006, Josh Jeffries in 2002, Avery Hall in 1992, Dexter Coakley again in 1994, Matt Stevens in 1994, Larry Harbin in 1963, and Mark LeGree in 2010 could all be worthy of a mention.
I can't find all the stats for Larry Hand's last year but his story along with what he ended up doing makes me feel like he should be mentioned as well.
Am I missing anyone else?
Larry Hand, from the mid-60s is definitely a keeper in this discussion. His stats will need to carry an asterisk because he played most of the minutes of most of his Mountaineer games on both defense and offense. THE APPALACHIAN'S coverage referred to him as a Greek God for his iron-man heroics. He drew double-team attention on every snap regardless of where he was lined up. He was the most busy guy in the stadium on game day.
DB Wayne Byrd, also from the mid-60s, deserves to be in this conversation.
Then there was a guy named Corey Lynch just a few years back who had this *bad habit* of breaking-up or intercepting passes and blocking punts. His teammates still tease him good-naturedly about a particular play in '07.
If we are talking about top 5 careers among defenders in App history I would definitely say Coakley, Hackett, Hand, and Lynch would be in there. Not sure who I would would fill 5th spot but I feel like those 4 would have to be there. I do believe had Jason Hunter been able to learn the system a lot sooner and have 3 years as a starter that he would have been drafted and would be considered among the top 5 for sure.
I believe I'm correct in stating that a part-time SID was hired just before the '68 football season. By then, Hand had been starting for the Lions for a couple of years plus.