DES MOINES — The Iowa Newspaper Association announced its 2013 All-State Football selections Tuesday, naming honorary captains in classes A, 1A, 2A, 3A, 4A and 8-Man.
Perry junior Will Whiton was named as a First Team defensive back in Class 3A for the second consecutive year, with Bluejay senior Ben Daniels named to the Third Team at wide receiver.
Woodward-Granger senior Tanner Canova was a repeat Class A First Team selection on the defensive line, with junior defensive back Cole Ashman also named the First Team. Hawk senior Marshall Nieland was a Second Team offensive back, one year after being named a Second Team wide receiver, while fellow senior Dylan Nixon was chosen for the Third Team defensive line.
Whiton had 32 total tackles (26 solo) while intercepting three passes, one of which was returned 25 yards for a score. He is widely considered one of the best secondary players in pass coverage in the state.
Daniels was chosen at wideout after snagging 35 passes for 788 yards and eight TDs. His 22.5 yards per catch average was, by a wide margin, the best in 3A for those with 25 or more grabs.
Canova repeated after twice earning District 7 Defensive MVP honors. He had 61 tackles, but 11 were for negative yardage and he recorded eight sacks. The senior recovered three fumbles, returning one 31 yards for a touchdown.
He was joined on the First Team defense by Ashman, who recorded 62 tackles while picking off one pass, which was returned 32 yards. Ashman was credited with 15 pass break-ups on the season.
Nieland repeated on the Second Team after making a switch from receiver to tailback. He rean 235 times for 1,432 yards and 13 TDs while catching 24 passes for 348 yards and one score.
Nixon secured a Third Team spot after tallying 88 tackles at defensive tackle. The senior had three sacks and also recorded nine tackles behind the line of scrimmage.
John Swisher (Dowling Catholic, 4A), Trent Solsma (Bishop Heelan, 3A), Cole Neary (Kuemper Catholic, 2A), Riley Dixon (Iowa City Regina, 1A), Brandon Snyder (West Lyon, A) and Jake Hogan (Don Bosco, 8P) were their respective team captains.
These six team captains will be in the running for the 4th Annual Ed Thomas Mr. Football Award presented by the INA. The award recognizes a high school football player who has demonstrated excellent performance on the gridiron and exemplary character in all aspects of life and will be presented in the spring.
A full listing of all three teams for each of the six classes can be found online at www.inanews.com.
Sports writers serving on the INA selection committee which made the team selections were: Jeff Webster, Perry Chief; Corey Meints, Ackley World Journal; Greg Grabanowski, Algona Upper Des Moines; Daryl Schepanski, Anamosa Journal-Eureka; Scott Spurgeon, Bloomfield Democrat; Jeff Johnson, Cedar Rapids Gazette; Jon Gremmels, Clinton Herald; Larry Peterson, Creston News Advertiser; Scott Vicker, Creston News Advertiser; Matt Coss, Davenport Quad-City Times; Ross Eberhart, DeWitt Observer; Beth Lutgen, Dyersville Commercial; Dan Voigt, Emmetsburg Publishing; John McBride, Fort Dodge Messenger; John Jensen, Grundy Center Register; Bruce Thein, Guttenberg Press; Kristi Nixon, Hampton Chronicle; Mike Oeffner, Harlan Newspapers; Mike Helle, Knoxville Journal-Express; Troy Hyde, Marshalltown Times-Republican; Tyler Strand, Marshalltown Times-Republican; Ross Thede, Marshalltown Times-Republican; Matt Gengler, Missouri Valley Times-News; Nick Cusick, Muscatine Journal; Kevin White, Omaha World-Herald; Perry Bell, Pella Chronicle; Terry Hersom, Sioux City Journal; Ryan Stonebraker, Tipton Conservative and Jim Nelson, Waterloo Courier.
Coaches and representatives of the Iowa Football Coaches Association who assisted with statistical information: Jerry Staton, Albia; Bob McCoy, Bedford; Tim Lewis, CR Kennedy; Tom Wilson, Dowling Catholic; Cory Faust, Glenwood; Kreg Lensch, Glidden-Ralston; Greg Thomas, Humboldt; Dave Messerili, Marion; Tony Perkins, Marion; Aaron Shipley, Marshalltown; Duane Orr, Mount Vernon; Brian Wilken, Newell-Fonda; Charlie Feller, North Cedar; Lyle Alumbaugh, Panorama; Bob Goodvin, SC East; Steve Milder, West Central; Gary Swenson, WDM Valley; Ken Winkler, West Marshall and George Ashman, W-G.