Munoz, Burnett are A-A

They both decided to return for a senior season. They both returned for a second tour as team captains. Both played major roles in Tennessee's return to the SEC Championship Game for the fourth time in eight years.

Thursday, Kevin Burnett and Michael Munoz saw the fruits of their commitment returned to them as they were named to the American Football Coaches Association All-America football team for 2004.

''I think it's a great statement that two young men with fine character and academic background like Kevin and Michael also have represented our university on the field well enough to be named to the All-America football team,'' head coach Phillip Fulmer said.

''I say that particularly about the coaches' team because that team offers the most insight toward which individuals are of the highest quality. Kevin Burnett and Michael Munoz certainly fit that description.''

Burnett began 2004 being named a Playboy Preseason All-America, then added preseason All-SEC nods from both the coaches and media. He has 101 overall tackles from the linebacker position to trail teammate Jason Allen by 11 for the team and SEC lead. He ranks sixth in Division I-A with 76 solo stops and was named SEC Defensive Player of the Week after making 16 tackles in the win over Florida.

Munoz has 59 knockdown blocks from the offensive tackle position and has helped Tennessee to a rushing average of 177.2 yards per game compared to 138.5 in 2003. He was a vital part of the offensive line that helped groom freshman quarterbacks Erik Ainge and Brent Schaeffer, then transitioned smoothly to current signal-caller Rick Clausen. Munoz has started all 46 games in which he has appeared.

Burnett is the first Vol linebacker named All-America since Raynoch Thompson in 1999. Munoz is the first offensive lineman from Tennessee to be named since Cosey Coleman the same season.

Tennessee has had a total of 67 individual All-America selections, recognized a total of 82 times. The Vols have placed at least one player on an All-America team in seven of the last eight years.

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