Stonehill's senior All-American among seven NE-10 student-athletes set to participate in this weekend's event in New York
EASTON, Mass. (November 29, 2011) – Stonehill College senior All-America kick returner Stephan Neville (Foxborough, Mass./Foxborough) has been selected to participate in the 2011 NCAA Division II vs. NAIA Senior Classic this Saturday at Faller Field in Middletown, N.Y. The game, which is sponsored by the Collegiate Development Football League (CDFL), will kickoff at 1 p.m., and is scheduled to be webcast via the Amateur Sports Network.
Neville, the most decorated student-athlete in Stonehill football history, has earned first team All-Northeast-10 honors for the third-straight year and All-New England status from the New England Football Writers the last two seasons. He is also the first All-American in program history after being named to the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Coaches' All-America squad in 2010. He has earned six All-NE-10 awards over the course of his four years, earning four as a return specialist (three first team) and two as a cornerback (one first team). He became the first student-athlete in program history to earn first team All-Conference honors at two positions in the same year when he accomplished the feat his sophomore season at return specialist and corner.
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Neville, who has set an NCAA Division II record with ten career kickoff returns for touchdowns, led the Northeast-10 for the third-straight year by averaging 29.8 yards per kickoff return (7th nationally in Division II), totaling 686 yards on 23 returns with two touchdowns. He ranks third in the NE-10 (19th nationally) by averaging 12.1 yards on punt returns, totaling 194 yards on 16 returns with one touchdown. Neville finished the year third on the team with 918 all-purpose yards, adding 38 yards on an interception return to his totals above, and also contributed 30 tackles (23 solo), including 3.0 for a loss of 12 yards, an interception, five pass breakups and a fumble recovery on the defensive side of the ball.
Neville, who tied the NCAA All-Division record with his 11 career kick return touchdowns (10 KO/ 1 PR) and matched the Division II mark for total scoring runbacks with 12, has played 40 of a possible 41 games over his career. He has returned 88 kickoffs for 2,785 yards (31.65/return), with the ten returns for touchdowns. He ranks second in program history with 3,175 career all-purpose yards and has two career 94-yard touchdown returns, the first coming on the opening kickoff of a 23-21 win over then No. 24-ranked Bentley University in the final game of the 2009 season, with the latter coming against the University of New Haven in 2010. Neville led all of Division II when he averaged 36.7 yards per return his sophomore season and matched a Division II record with four kickoff returns for touchdowns in 2010.
Neville has totaled 164 tackles (114 solo) over his career on defense for Stonehill, posting 5.5 career tackles for a loss, 12 interceptions with another 25 pass breakups, three forced fumbles and three fumble recoveries.
Stonehill posted back-to-back wins to close out the 2011 season, finishing with a 4-7 record overall, including a 3-5 clip in Northeast-10 play to place sixth in the Conference standings.