It's a busy morning for BYU football as another postseason awards list comes out and the Cougars also announce a couple of new recruits.
It's probably no surprise to any BYU fans that senior All-American linebacker Kyle Van Noy was named Independent Defensive Player of the Year.
Six other Cougars were also recognized as members of the All-Independent team.
On offense, Jamaal Williams (RB) and Michael Yeck (OL) were the two BYU representatives, while the defense had Eathyn Manumaleuna (DL), Uani 'Unga (LB) and Daniel Sorensen (DB) join Van Noy.
Adam Hine was also recognized in the special teams category for his kick returning.
Williams and Sorensen were unanimous selections to the All-Independent Team.
I'm always glad to see these guys be recognized because they are outstanding athletes and had great seasons.
In new pertaining to the future, wide receiver and defensive back may be two areas of concern for the BYU football team in 2014 but the Cougars shored up both positions Wednesday.
The Cougars announced the signing of wide receiver Nick Kurtz and defensive back Michael Shelton.
Kurtz has played two years at Grossmont College in El Cajon, Calif., while Shelton is from Wakefield High School in Raleigh, N.C.
Both players intend to enroll in January.
I think these are two good pieces for BYU to add to the team, although — as with all recruits — I'm going to reserve judgment on their potential futures until I see them on the field.
Here is the complete release from BYU:
"PROVO, Utah (Dec. 18, 2013) — BYU head football coach Bronco Mendenhall today announced wide receiver Nick Kurtz out of Grossmont College in El Cajon, Calif., and defensive back Michael Shelton from Wakefield High School in Raleigh, N.C. have signed with BYU.
"Both players plan to enroll at BYU in January. As a junior college player, Kurtz signed a National Letter of Intent to join the Cougars, while Shelton signed a scholarship agreement as a high school senior and mid-year enrollee.
"Nick and Michael are both great athletes and excellent football players,” Mendenhall said. “We look forward to having them join our program in January.”
"One of the nation’s most sought-after JC players, Kurtz is a 6-foot-6, 205-pound receiver who attended Valhalla High School prior to two seasons at Grossmont College. The talented wideout comes to BYU as the fourth-rated receiver and No. 22 overall JC prospect in the country according to Rivals.com. Kurtz chose BYU among more than a dozen offers from programs including USC, Oregon and LSU.
"With 4.5 speed and exceptional size, Kurtz produced 1,301 yards and 18 touchdowns in 18 games for Grossmont’s passing attack the past two seasons. He recorded six multi-touchdown games, including two three-TD outings, while totaling more than 100 yards on four occasions, including a single-game high of 174 yards. The four-star prospect (Rivals.com) averaged nearly 15 yards per catch while amassing 87 receptions overall.
"A consistent performer, Kurtz totaled 10 scoring receptions as a freshman and added eight more during his sophomore campaign in 2013. The El Cajon, Calif., native contributed 67.1 receiving yards per game as a sophomore in 2013 to ranked No. 6 in the Southern California Football Association’s Southern Conference. He ranked No. 3 in 2012 with a 77.4 yards-per-game average.
"Kurtz will enter BYU as a junior with three years to complete his two remaining seasons of eligibility.
"Shelton is a 5-foot-8, 170-pound speedster who played both offense and defense at Wakefield High School in Raleigh, N.C. He played both receiver and cornerback on the football field while helping Wakefield earn an 11-2 record and advance into the state playoffs.
"Known for his physical play and athleticism, Shelton has recorded a 4.43 time in the 40-yard dash and a vertical leap of 38 inches. He made a team-high three interceptions on defense while adding 20 receptions for 277 yards on the offensive side of scrimmage in 2013. He averaged 13.9 yards per catch and while scoring four touchdowns among his 20 catches.
"In addition to football, Shelton has earned national accolades applying his talents in track and field, where he achieved gold-medal status in the United States Track and Field Junior Olympic Championships in the 800-meter race."