For once, the pundits all agree-- Vanderbilt true freshman running back Kwane Doster, who set a record for a Commodore freshman with 798 rushing yards, has been named SEC Freshman of the Year by three different media outlets.
The Southeastern Conference coaches, the Associated Press, and the Knoxville News-Sentinel all named Doster SEC Freshman of the Year. In addition, The Sporting News also named him SEC Offensive Freshman of the Year.
The freshman from Tampa, Fla. started the season as the team's third-string tailback, but was pressed into action after injuries sidelined Ronald Hatcher and Norval McKenzie. Doster finished a remarkable season ranked sixth in the SEC in rushing (798 yards) and fourth in all-purpose yards (138.5 per game).
Vanderbilt senior linebacker Hunter Hillenmeyer, who led the SEC in tackles with 169 tackles, also received a number of post-season awards. The SEC coaches named Hillenmeyer to the first-team All-SEC Team as a linebacker, while the Associated Press named him second-team All-SEC.
Hillenmeyer's honors come on top of two outstanding scholar-athlete awards. For his work in the classroom as well as on the field, the senior from Nashville was named a member of the first-team Verizon Wireless Academic All-America Team, as well as a National Scholar Athlete for Division I-A by the National Football Foundation. Hillenmeyer attended a banquet in New York earlier this week to receive the National Scholar Athlete award.
Senior receiver Dan Stricker was named second-team All-SEC by the league's coaches. The Commodore captain from Cincinnati finished his Vanderbilt career with 2,880 receiving yards (fifth all-time in the SEC) and 182 catches (eighth all-time in the SEC). He also set a new school record with 21 career touchdown receptions.
On the SEC coaches' All-Freshman Team, Vanderbilt led all SEC teams with five selections. Doster was joined on the team by quarterback Jay Cutler, offensive guard Mac Pyle, outside linebacker Moses Osemwegie, and punter Greg Johnson. The Knoxville News-Sentinel also named Doster, Cutler, Pyle and Johnson to its All-SEC Freshman Team.