Entering its second season in Conference USA and expected to compete for the title this fall, Western Kentucky saw four of its players named to the leagues preseason team on Tuesday.
The selections were highlighted by the naming of senior quarterback Brandon Doughty as the preseason C-USA Offensive Player of the Year. Joining him on the preseason team are three fellow seniors, running back Leon Allen, wide receiver Jared Dangerfield and defensive back Wonderful Terry.
Doughty, the reigning Conference USA MVP, became the first Hilltopper to garner preseason Player of the Year honors. Former WKU linebacker Andrew Jackson was chosen as the Sun Belt Conference’s Preseason Defensive Player of the Year prior to the 2013 season.
A Maxwell Award Watch List member, Doughty led the nation with 4,830 passing yards and 49 touchdowns in 2014 while leading the Hilltoppers to an 8-5 record and their first FBS bowl win in program history.
One of Doughty's favorite targets, Jared Dangerfield set new WKU single-season records with 69 receptions and 11 touchdowns in his first season in Bowling Green. He started all 13 games and finished the year with a team-high 825 yards, which included a pair of 100-yard outings, earning Second Team All C-USA honors.
Leon Allen became the fifth consecutive WKU running back to eclipse the 1,500 yards mark when he rushed for 1,542 yards last fall, a total that ranked 18th best in the nation. Also a threat to catch the ball out of the backfield, Allen registered 2,018 yards from a scrimmage, a total that led C-USA and ranked seventh nationally. He was a Second Team All C-USA selection in 2014.
Like Dangerfield, Wonderful Terry also made a big impact during his first year at WKU. Terry, a Second Team All C-USA choice last fall, recorded three defensive touchdowns, two of which came in game-sealing or game-winning fashion. He totaled two interceptions and had three tackles for a loss.
Offensive Player of the Year
Brandon Doughty, Sr., QB, WKU
Defensive Player of the Year
Richard Leonard, Sr., DB, FIU
Special Teams Player of the Year
Autrey Golden, Sr., KR, UTEP
First Team Offense
QB Brandon Doughty, Sr., WKU
RB Leon Allen, Sr., WKU
RB Kenneth Dixon, Sr., Louisiana Tech
RB Devon Johnson, Sr., Marshall
RB Aaron Jones, Jr., UTEP
OL Jordan Budwig, Jr., FIU
OL Darius Johnson, Sr., Middle Tennessee
OL Kaydon Kirby, Jr., North Texas
OL Andrew Reue, Sr., Rice
OL Clint Van Horn, Jr., Marshall
WR Jared Dangerfield, Sr., WKU
WR Carlos Harris, Sr., North Texas
WR Zach Pascal, Jr., Old Dominion
WR Trent Taylor, Jr., Louisiana Tech
TE Jonnu Smith, Jr., FIU
First Team Defense
DL Vernon Butler, Sr., Louisiana Tech
DL Jason Neill, Sr., UTSA
DL Jarquez Samuel, Sr., Marshall
DL Michael Smith, Sr., Southern Miss
DL Michael Wakefield, Sr., FIU
LB T.T. Barber, Sr., Middle Tennessee
LB Drew Douglas, UTSA
LB D.J. Hunter, Sr., Marshall
DB Kevin Byard, Sr., Middle Tennessee
DB Crevon Leblanc, Florida Atlantic
DB Richard Leonard, Sr., FIU
DB Bennett Okotcha, Sr., UTSA
DB Wonderful Terry, Sr., WKU
DB Xavier Woods, Jr., Louisiana Tech
First Team Special Teams
K Trevor Moore, So., North Texas
P Tyler Williams,, Sr., Marshall