LOUISVILLE, Ky. - The Union football team placed four players on the All-Mid-South Conference East First Team and had 11 total players honored, the conference announced Wednesday.
Senior offensive lineman Jonathan Shipley, senior running back Rob Brown, senior defensive back Bert Brown and junior linebacker Ryan Shipley all landed on the All-MSC East First Team. This is the first All-Conference First Team honor for each of the four recipients.
In addition, four others were named All-MSC East Honorable Mentions. Those honorees include senior offensive lineman Jeremy Baker, sophomore wide receiver Domonique Jefferson, senior defensive lineman C.J. Hunnicutt and freshman return specialist Keondrick Daniels.
Union had five players make the MSC All-Academic Team. The honorees are Jonathan Shipley, Zach Eagler, Otis Manning, Darrin Greene and Jon Combs.
Jonathan Shipley, a native of Tazewell, Tenn., spent four years on the offensive line. He helped anchor a line which guided the way for the Bulldog offense to average 22.0 points and 338.3 yards per game this season.
Rob Brown, who is from Daytona, Fla., led the team in rushing with 682 yards and four touchdowns on 149 carries. He also caught 22 passes for 126 yards and two scores and returned three kickoffs for 147 yards and a touchdown. Brown finished his career as the program's fourth all-time leading rusher with 2,699 yards on 525 carries with 19 touchdowns, tied for 16th in career receptions with 72 for 823 yards and six receiving touchdowns and ranked second-most in all-purpose yards with 4,515.
Bert Brown, also from Daytona, Fla., spent the past four seasons in the Bulldog secondary and ended his career with nine interceptions to place him in a tie for fifth in program history. He ended the season ranked 15th in the NAIA in passes defended per game at 1.3 as he had a total of 14 with two interceptions and 12 breakups. Brown also recorded 45 total tackles on the year. He wrapped up his career with 173 total tackles, 35 pass breakups and 44 passes defended.
Ryan Shipley, who hails from New Tazewell, Tenn., started all 11 games for Union and led the team with 83 total tackles with 39 solos. He had 6.5 tackles for a loss of 21 yards and 3.5 sacks. In addition, Shipley had one fumble recovery and one pass deflection. For his career, he has 130 total tackles to his credit. Shipley and the rest of the Bulldog defense ranked 13th in the nation in total sacks (30) and 17th in sacks per game (2.7).
Baker, who is from West Palm Beach, Fla., started 11 games this season at left tackle. He was a two-year starter on the offensive line after spending one season on the defensive line, where he made 19 tackles and recorded 2.0 sacks. Jefferson, a native of Lawrenceville, Ga., led the team in receiving with 31 catches for 500 yards and six touchdowns. He averaged 16.1 yards per catch. Hunnicutt, who hails from Bradenton, Fla., started in 10 games and recorded 49 total tackles, 5.5 tackles for a loss of 19 yards, 2.5 sacks and two pass deflections. He also recovered one fumble and blocked one kick. Daniels, a Tallahassee, Fla., native, averaged 11.9 yards per punt return and 25.0 yards per kick return. He returned a punt for a 79-yard touchdown and a kickoff 83 yards for another score against Bethel (Tenn.) to earn him NAIA Special Teams Player of the Week honors.
The Bulldogs went 4-7 overall and 1-4 in the MSC East.