Linebacker Named Defensive Performer of the Year
(NSU NEWSROOM--Jan. 10, 2014)--Norfolk State junior linebacker Lynden Trail added to his impressive awards haul from the 2013 season Thursday when he was named the FCS National Defensive Performer of the Year by the College Football Performance Awards.
Started in 2008, the CFPA’s goal is to provide the most scientifically rigorous conferments in college football. Recipients are selected exclusively based upon objective scientific rankings of the extent to which individual players increase the overall effectiveness of their teams. Twenty-one CFPA winners have been first-round NFL Draft selections.
The 6-7, 260-pound, Trail was at his best in the Spartans’ victories this past season. He made two interceptions and also caught a scoring pass in the win over Morgan State, earning MEAC Defensive Player of the Week honors.
The following week against Savannah State, Trail amassed 10 tackles, a sack, another TD reception, two pass breakups and blocked the potential game-winning field goal in the closing seconds. But perhaps his signature moment came in NSU’s 27-24 upset win over No. 12 Bethune-Cookman on Nov. 9. Trail racked up eight tackles, 2.5 for loss, 1.5 sacks, two forced fumbles and a pass deflection to earn MEAC and Co-National Defensive Player of the Week accolades.
Trail was second on the Spartans with 94 tackles this year, which ranked 16th in the conference. He added 12.5 tackles for loss (tied for eighth in MEAC), 8.5 sacks (fifth in MEAC), two interceptions, eight pass breakups, 10 quarterback hurries, five forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and two blocked field goals. With 10 total passes defended, Trail was the only non-defensive back to rank in the MEAC’s top 10 in that category (tied for ninth).
Trail tied for first in the nation in forced fumbles per game (0.42). Lining up at receiver in red-zone packages, Trail also caught a team-high three touchdowns passes. Including a fumble recovery for a touchdown against Florida A&M, Trail tied with running back Rolandan Finch for the team-lead in TDs during the year, with four.
Trail has earned first-team All-America honors by The Sports Network, first-team all-state accolades by The Roanoke Times and was a first-team All-MEAC selection.
*Information courtesy of the Norfolk State University Office of Sports Information