Lankerd joins Anderson on the first-team
AUSTIN, Texas – Olivet College senior punter Ryan Anderson has been voted the 2016 College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) Academic All-American® of the Year for NCAA Division III Football. Senior tight end Travis Lankerd joins him on the Academic All-America® first-team.
Anderson and Lankerd helped the Comets finish the 2016 season with a 9-2 overall record and win an outright Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) title for the first time in school history since 1974. Olivet also advanced to the 2016 NCAA Division III Playoffs for only the second time in school history.
This season, Anderson averaged 46.2 yards per punt, which currently ties the NCAA Division III single-season record. Fifteen of his punts landed inside the opponent's 20-yard line, and 18 punts went for more than 50 yards, including a long of 65 yards. The average also ranks seventh among all NCAA punters, regardless of division.
A 2016 D3football.com Preseason All-American, Anderson earned first-team All-MIAA honors for a second straight season. Last season, he earned American Football Coaches Association All-America honors, AP Little All-America third-team and D3football.com All-North Region first-team honors.
Anderson carries a perfect 4.0 grade point average in business administration. He is fellow for the President's Leadership Institute (PLI) and is currently an intern at Northwestern Mutual.
Lankerd finished the season with 19 catches for 186 yards and a touchdown. His longest reception covered 25 yards and his touchdown was a 12-yard catch, and both were in a 27-13 win over Elmhurst (Ill.) College.
Lankerd has a 3.95 GPA in insurance and risk management. He is also a PLI fellow, and is the chief membership officer for Gamma Iota Sigma and holds membership in the Global Citizen's Honors Program. Lankerd has completed internships at Worldwide Facilities Wholesale Brokerage and Navigators Specialty Group and Swett & Crawford in Chicago.
Anderson and Lankerd are the fourth and fifth football players in school history to be named to the CoSIDA Academic All-America® teams. They also pick-up the 30th and 31st CoSIDA Academic All-America® awards. In addition, Anderson is only the second Comet to be named the CoSIDA Academic All-American® of the Year. The other was swimmer Kellen Beckwith in 2011.
The CoSIDA Division III Academic All-America® program is being financially supported by the NCAA Division III national governance structure to assist CoSIDA with handling the awards fulfillment aspects for the 2016-17 Division III Academic All-America® teams program.
To be eligible for Academic All-America® consideration, a student-athlete must be a varsity starter or key reserve, maintain a cumulative G.P.A. of 3.30 on a scale of 4.00, have reached sophomore athletic and academic standings at his/her current institution and be nominated by his/her sports information director.
Since the program's inception in 1952, CoSIDA has bestowed Academic All-America® honors on more than 14,000 student-athletes in Divisions I, II, III and NAIA, covering all NCAA championship sports.