The Youngstown State football program held a special Awards Celebration on Monday evening in DeBartolo Hall to honor the standouts from the 2012 season.
Senior tailback Jamaine Cook was named the program's John Delsersone MVP for his performance during the 2012 campaign. Senior tight end Will Shaw was named the Outstanding Offensive Player and senior defensive tackle Aronde Stanton was tabbed the Outstanding Defensive Player.
Junior offensive guard Chris Elkins was the recipient of the Jim Zdelar Offensive Lineman of the Year award while senior defensive tackle Nick DeKraker was selected as the Jermaine Hopkins Defensive Lineman of the Year and junior punter Nick Liste was tabbed the McFadden/Wilkins Specialist of the Year.
Earning various leadership awards were junior tailback Torrian Pace, who received the Dr. Neal R. Frost Outreach Man of the Year Award, senior tight end Chuck Lengyel, who was selected to receive the Dr. Pat Spurgeon Torch Bearer Award, senior center Mark Pratt was honored as the Ron Stoops Most Inspirational Award while DeKraker earned the program's Four Square Academic Awards.
Sophomore cornerback Julius Childs and freshman wide receiver Michael Wheary were named the team's Newcomers of the Year. Junior linebacker Dom Rich, junior quarterback Kurt Hess, Stanton and Cook all received Captains Awards. Cook was also the recipient of the YSU Football Alumni Difference Maker Award, which goes to the most outstanding performer during the annual Homecoming Game.
Cook, who was a second-team All-Missouri Valley Football Conference selection, rushed for 1,279 yards on 279 carries while scoring a career-high 15 touchdowns. It was the most rushing touchdowns in the campaign by a Penguin since Marcus Mason had 23 in 2006. It was the third consecutive year Cook eclipsed the 1,000-yard rushing mark. He ended his career with he second-most rushing yards in school history.
Shaw, a second-team all-conference pick, caught a career-high 35 passes for 429 yards and five touchdowns. He led the team in all three categories for the campaign. Stanton, an honorable-mention all-league selection, had 37 total tackles, including 21 solo stops and finished with four sacks on the year.
Elkins was a first-team all-conference honoree in 2012. He was the YSU offensive lineman to be named first-team all-league since Brad Samsa in 2008. He started all 11 games at right guard for the Penguins. DeKraker led the team with five sacks and had 26 total tackles on the year.
Liste averaged 40.7 yards on 37 punts and had a career long of 67 during the year. He had six kicks of 50-yards plus and placed 13 inside the oppositions 20-yard line.
Childs was named to the MVFC's All-Newcomer squad for his performance in 2012. He started all 11 games at cornerback and led the secondary with 51 total tackles, which ranked third on the team. Wheary caught seven passes for 94 yards and had seven carries for 37 yards.
In receiving the Four Square Academic Award, DeKraker posted a 3.90 grade-point average in business administration. He was a first-team all-conference academic pick while being selected to the FCS Academic All-Star squad.
Against South Dakota, Cook rushed for 203 yards on 42 carries and scored the Guins' lone touchdown in the 13-10 Homecoming victory to earn the Football Alumni's Difference Maker Award.
2012 YSU Football Award Winners
John Delserone Most Valuable Player – Jamine Cook, TB
Outstanding Offensive Player - Will Shaw, TE
Outstanding Defensive Player – Aronde Stanton, DT
Jim Zdelar Offensive Lineman of the Year – Chris Elkins, OG
Jermaine Hopkins Defensive Lineman of the Year - Nick DeKraker, DT
McFadden/Wilkins Specialist of the Year – Nick Liste. P
Dr. Neal R. Frost Outreach Man of the Year Award – Torrian Pace, TB
Dr. Pat Spurgeon Torch Bearer Award – Chuck Lengyel, TE
Ron Stoops Most Inspirational Player – Mark Pratt, C
Newcomer of the Year – Julius Childs and Michael Wheary
Football Alumni Award Difference Maker (vs. South Dakota) -- Cook
Four Square Academic Award -- DeKraker
Captains Award - Hess, Rich, Stanton, Cook